Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Let’s, like, write it right Y’all!

I just came across this sentence being used to describe a product from very popular website geared towards digital design professionals - "All components was created on a 12-grid system, they like fit together like puzzles".

I’m including this actual screen capture of the sentence so you can be equally gobsmacked by its appearance.


The very fact that this sentence was not only constructed by a paid employee, but also - presumably - made it past an editor's gaze, given the OK, and then published on a very public (and heretofore professional) website shows that this is what now passes for professionalism in our culture. 

That ominous deep ringing sound that you are now hearing is the death knell of competency. Get used to it. Make friends with it. You’ll be hearing it more and more frequently as the weeks pass.

I’m not exactly sure how we have arrived at this point, but I have my theories.

I believe that there are several paths that have led us to the big Dumbapoloza complacency party. Complete reliance upon digital ink and the need to crank out snippets of copy at the speed of light in order to attract viewers, our crumbling public school system and the ocean of garbage that revels in ignorance while passing for entertainment are all factors in the dumbing down of America.

Make no mistake here, I’m not overreacting at the sight of one small, poorly written sentence, I’m responding to the clues that are becoming more and more prevalent with each passing day in this country. The public appearance of this one simple sentence (though you could pick from a plethora of others) shows you that the door to complacency and ignorance is now open and serving as a portal to it’s becoming an accepted way of life in this country.

You can see it reflected in American media, in entertainment, and perhaps most disturbing of all – at the voting booth. There are members of Congress that say absolutely moronic things. Smart people don’t vote for morons unless they have a plan to use them for some kind of purpose.

In that context, visualize the offending sentence as one of those loose threads that is pulled off of a suit in a slap-stick comedy routine. The thread is quickly pulled and the next thing you know, off comes the sleeve. Insert the comic slide whistle sound here.

Of course, my kvetching won't change the ever devolving professional standard. I am simply here to shine the light of awareness on this situation. It is my hope that others will do the same – though I realize that each time I turn on my proverbial flashlight, I am moving deeper and deeper into the forgotten land of “old school”.

But so be it, eventually the pendulum will swing back into enlightenment. It always does. But I’m afraid there will be a very long – and dark – path to tread before it does.


Anonymous said...

Amen, bro! Like "deja vu all over again".

Anonymous said...

I knew our downfall was coming when I saw, in National Geographic, an advert which used "less" where "fewer" should have been used. It's a small thing, but since then, I've seen "then" where "than" should be used, and I won't even start on your and you're, or their, there, and they're. The ability to communicate effectively is rapidly becoming a rare trait.