"The purpose of any type of publication is communication. The only thing that matters is if the reader understands the message."
In 1946 George Orwell, author of Animal farm and 1984, published an essay on effective writing. He suggests five simple rules to follow:
- Never use a metaphor, or other figure of speech you are used to seeing in print."
- Never use a long word when a short one will do.
- If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.
- Never use the passive where you can use the active.
- Never use a foreign word, scientific word or jargon when you can think of an everyday English equivalent.
Who are we to disagree, he’s right of course. Still: when you browse the internet, try to read a manual, whitepaper, leaflet or data sheet, it quickly becomes clear these simple rules are not followed by all. Corporate gibberish, buzzwords and techno speak are more common than clear sentences in official publications.
The main reason for this is that while the writers know everything there is to know about their topic, the readers do not.
That is where Verbis can help. We have 20+ years of experience interpreting between experts and readers. We create clear text for all target audiences.