Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Vehicle accelerates pointed communication

People who talk too much often say the very least.

It always scares me when intellectual capital is trumped by unbridled verbosity. Smarts fall victim to capacity all too often in business, academia and social circles.

In this 24/7 world of communication, however, I have seen a surprising point of light. It's Twitter.

Finally, there is forum that limits its users to 140 characters of text to make a point, give an opinion, highlight a link, or make a stand. We've finally forced people to get to the point more quickly -- whether they want to or not.

Twitter is a great rehabilitation vehicle for frustrated writers and communicators. Who can ever forget adding six extra pages to an already mind-numbing high school history term paper in hopes of earning a better grade? It didn't work then and it works less now.

Tweets are the written equivalent of EPA fuel economy standards for cars. People expect great mileage from the gas in the tank. Tweets offer great communication from the words in a sentence.

Pedal to the metal!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Media snows public on weather report

Buy salt. Check windshield wiper-fluid level. Put snow shovel in trunk.

The media types made the case and provided the checkist. Get ready for the Storm of the Century!

The result? Same as the Game of the Century, Vintage of the Century, Car of the Century and Flood of the Century. More bluster than benefit, more hype than help.

Last night I was ready for 12 to 15 inches of pristine snow roaring in from the Great Plains. Make no plans for Wednesday, I thought, warm-up for multiple shoveling sessions, and get ready to hunker down with good books.

The driveway only took on seven inches of the white stuff. It's a substantial snowfall for certain but not enough to order snowshoes or rent a fleet of sled dogs. I don't even want to think about the economic hardship it caused businesses and shopkeepers who had frightened employees not showing up for work or customers scared of slippin' and slidin'.

I thought journalists were supposed to inform and enlighten. Unfortunately, in the 24/7 world of today's news cycle, they don't have much time to do either.