Length of contributions LO12117

Wed, 22 Jan 1997 01:32:59 -0500 (EST)

Replying to LO12094 --

Clyde observes:

>> Whatever happened to the well-turned phrase? The logically developed
>> argument? The intelligently presented thesis? I don't think that either
>> of these is generally possible without spending some time composing
>> thoughts and presenting them in a coherent manner. That generally means
>> long postings. Then, too, there's the problem of not feeling like we have
>> enough time to spend actually reading one of these antiquated
>> presentations.

It seems to me that the terseness of our communication has caused us to
lose a certain richness in our language. Instead of painting a picture
with words, we want to cut to the heart of the matter. We want to get at
the facts. It's almost as if we're losing a sense of context: Facts stand
on their own merit, independent of their environment.

And as our use of language changes I think it is inhibiting the ability of
our children to use their imagination. When I was a child there were no
video games, no home videos. I entertained myself by imagining things. I
grew up in South Carolina. In my backyard were several tall evergreen
trees. I would imagine those trees to be pirates. I cannot tell you how
many hours I spent hitting the trees with my wooden sword, as though I
were in the heat of battle.

To this day, I think my desire to use language richly, and to imagine
things, is a driving force in my ability to be creative. The frustration I
have had in my career (and often with this list) is that things are always
so matter of fact. While I enjoy technical writing, I find it does little
to foster my creativity. And while I love participating on this list, I
feel that if I were to use language the way I would like it would turn
many people off.

I prefer public speaking to this type of communication, because then I can
use language as I like and see how the audience responds. I know whether
my message is being heard. I know if my use of the language enhances my
message or if it is a distraction. And I can then make real-time

I cannot tell you how badly I wish I could see all 2,000 faces on this
list as I write my messages. I think the tone, the structure, and the use
of language would be quite different. Like Al Jolson, I like looking into
faces. It allows me to know if I'm connecting with the audience.


Benjamin B. Compton bbcompton@aol.com

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>