I don’t know if any one has noticed yet, but I love quotes and like to let other people speak the things that I am feeling (as I have stated before) so that is the reason for my quoted titles. I think they speak for themselves, and what I am about to write. Anywho, on to the content:
Long and short forms of writing can be one of the hardest things to learn, but once you do, I truly think you have become the writing genius. If you are able to transition from an blog post, academic paper, and tweet simultaneously, than my hat is off to you.
Social media can be a difficult thing. When I first started on social media, I found it easy to talk using emojis, or shortened words (ur, tho, lol) staying WELL below the character limits implemented (i.e. Twitter). As my writing progressed, I found it harder and would scrap entire tweets that went over the limit, unable to decide what words to butcher. I think perhaps this could be the reason why I retweet as much as I do, letting someone else speak for me and taking away the unnecessary anxiety of having something important to say, but not being able to say it within 140 characters. It tends to be the same for me with texting: my friends will often barade me for my correct use of your/you’re or their/there/they’re. Despite this, it tends to be a style that we have adapted to, reading these different shortened words and being unable to read anything longer than 140 Twitter characters, often avoiding the read more link on Facebook as well (The gist of the conversation must be in the first couple of lines right?!)
The reality of the situation is that society as succumed to this shortened way of communication, perhaps harking back to our ever decreasing attention spans in the midst of technology. As much as I love social media and technology (I’ll be the first to admit that I can’t be away from my phone for very long) it’s interesting to think of how lost we would all be without our technology. In a world where printed materials are scarce, would we be able to resort back to reading full words, from a full text, for longer than our 5 minute attention spans? Would we be able to stylistically write more than 140 characters or a six word text?
The style of short forms of communication (texting and tweeting) becomes the easier form, perhaps not initially, but eventually we can all find solace in our ability to tweet something genius. Writing in long form (online blog writing, or long Facebook posts) become scarce and more difficult, potentially turning into a rant (as I feel like I’m doing right now). I think the hardest part that I needed to get used to was straying away from academic thesis-driven, preview towards the end of the introduction, writing. I needed to make my point clear within the first few words, or no one would continue reading. As hard and stressful as it was for me to cut down tweets it was a lot worse trying to figure out if I was hooking my audience in a short amount of time.
We rely so much on technology, and unfortunate or not, most of my news comes straight from a 140 character tweet with a link, that if I’m really interested in, I might click and read. Or I might not. The benefits of short writing, right?