Monday, November 11, 2013

Carroll, Chapter 6 "Getting It Right"

Editing is Everything

When people joke that they didn't proofread their paper, I may laugh but I know that if they're anything like me, it's going to affect their grade. I am pretty meticulous when writing my first drafts, but since I am usually exhausted when I finish my papers I know that there are multiple mistakes hidden in there. The same goes for online writing, but times ten. Academic papers and newspaper columns are generally the same format and rarely have unique design details. However, everything online is about capturing the viewers eye with design, and thus it must be edited.

In terms of visual appearance, it must be clean and appealing in order to attract and keep viewers. When it comes to factual and grammatical accuracy, that may be even more important. Gaining credibility online is difficult enough, but having small mistakes almost instantly repeals this authority, almost permanently. Have you even encountered a grammatical mistake online? Did it completely discredit the source or were you more empathetic?


When I was in 5th grade, my teacher always used acronyms to help us remember things. One that I remember well was KISS-Keep It Simple Stupid. The meaning of this is obvious, and usually she was referring to math and writing, but Carroll advocates keeping multimedia presentations simple. Considering how short our attention span is becoming, this is completely accurate, especially when it comes to videos. Unless it is the most intriguing thing I've ever watched, videos that are more than 3 minutes can sometimes feel like a chore to watch, even if I'm only watching it as a distraction.

However, when I am watching TV, I can watch for hours (sadly not an exaggeration) without feeling bored. But videos online that last 1/10th the time of a regular TV episode, I fidget and wonder if I should end it early or tough it out so I don't feel like a quitter. Am I the only one who struggles to watch 3 minute videos online but loves half hour or full hour TV shows?

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