There is some amazing writing on the web, but then there are gifts of writing that come descending out of clouds of babble like a shining star. The article, How to Write Like a Wanker, by Vincent Flanders, is one of those precious gems.
Like much of his wonderful cynical writing on his site Web Pages That Suck, this article tells it like it “isn’t” to help you understand what not to do when you write on your website or blog.
No matter what Flash-blinded web monkeys would have us believe, the Internet is a text-based medium: especially its major discussion forums (IRC and Usenet) where people from all over the world can interact and share information. A popular misconception about text messages on the Internet is that, to be an effective communicator and earn the respect and admiration of your peers, you must be able to write lucid prose; that your messages, articles, posts and pages must be easy to understand and pleasant to read.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Popular sites filled with cutting-edge Internet cognoscenti (such as Slashdot and ShackNews) give the lie to this harmful and destructive myth: they are brimming with horrific grammar, atrocious spelling, gratuitous abbreviation and childish, arrogant attitude. To be “in” on the net, you must write like a wanker.
This is truely a work of art. Among the tips he offers on writing like a wanker, my favorites are:
- Claim False Credentials.
- Make Shit Up.
- Cite Urban Legends.
Take time to read through this thoroughly and see if it resembled anything you do on your site? If it does, consider yourself a wanker. ;-)
And consider fixing it and changing your writing and blogging style.
For more examples of what to do and not do on your site, see more web pages that suck.