Tuesday, April 6, 2010

A Brighter Future For Client Service?

Clive Thompson wrote a terrific piece in Wired Magazine in August 2009, citing a five year study conducted by Dr. Andrea Lunsford at Stanford. The Stanford Study of Writing was a substantial undertaking where, between 2001 and 2006, she led a review of more than 14,000 student writing samples - everything from academic papers to Twitter updates. The results not only dispelled fears among many about the evolution of our language, but also provided illuminating insights about the future of client service.

I hear people lament the demise of the English language all the time. They speak to how texting, tweeting, and other such practices are contributing to poor grammar, marginal spelling, and an inability to express oneself "properly" in the written form. Lunsford disagrees. She claims, "I think we're in the midst of a literacy revolution the likes of which we haven't seen since Greek civilization." And as Thompson points out, "For Lunsford, technology isn't killing our ability to write. It's reviving it—and pushing our literacy in bold new directions."
*Image from edutopia.org


  1. Thanks for pointing to that study.

    I guess I am in the group of lamenting about the demise of language (not only the English one). Our generation produced and produces a lot of Gobbledygook which is hard anything else but persuasive.

    The most important hint for marketers (I'm not an educator): "You'll need to be fluent in the language of your market. Don't try to teach them what's right or wrong."


    P.S.: Strange. JS-Kit doesn't allow me to share my comment here with my Google Friends and my Twitter followers at the same time. Logged my out of Google again.

  2. John, thanks for your thoughtful comment! I understand what you mean. I guess what I applaud is the sensibility to the requirements of the audience and an aptitude for two-way communication. These can often be the harder things to learn. The rest will come over time. Sorry about the JS-Kit issue. I'll be sure to check into it.



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