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Testimonials And Supplements Bad fitness articles are a nickel a dozen. True, this is only my second post on how to spot bad articles but I have enough ideas to keep this going for a long time. To be clear, I am not talking about bad writing, necessarily, but bad practices, designed to cover up a lack of depth or understanding.
Although there is much overlap between these things and bad writing in general, I am aiming to help you uncover bad articles, not bad writing.
My writing may not always be up to even my standards for instance but while I have written articles that I would consider poorly written not very often have I written something which I consider to be bad content. So, we are talking about, really, uncovering fitness experts who don't know what they are talking about and use bad practices to cover a lack of depth and knowledge.
While an ineffective article can be rewritten to become an effective one, a bad article is a bad article no matter how you juggle it. This does not mean that if someone writes a bad article we should condemn them.
Nobody is perfect and everybody can have a bad day. I may be having a bad day as I write this.
It has happened before! Post one covered the excessive use of quotations. This post will cover three related problems in fitness articles: Author uses many uncommon and unusual words where common ones would suffice. How many times have you read an article that looks as if the author had a thesaurus open in front of him while writing it?
Well, he probably did. Confusing jargon and ambiguous and unusual words are not just a signal of a bad article they are often a means of obscuring bad science as well.
A common trick is to substitute a fancy sounding word for a common idea. Many times the definitions of the words themselves are vague or very diffuse because they are used in such widespread ways in many different situations. I consider the word fitness itself to be one of these words. But there are much worse examples such as holistic, organic, and natural.
Other times, words with very specific meanings are co-opted simply because they sound like good jargon more on jargon in particular below. The basic idea is to confuse, befuddle and otherwise deflect the readers mind from the lack of coherency. This is the path to success of some of the best-known fitness personalities on the internet.
You'll notice that I said internet and not "in the world". The internet is the perfect stage for such deliberately confusing language. However, it won't get you far in the field. You can confuse the masses into thinking you're a heck of smart guy and they just aren't educated enough to get you.
But you can't fool your paying clients! Unfortunately, these people can make more money selling products on the internet than they ever would have in the field alone. Deliberately attempting to mislead the reader by using jargon or ambiguous words is called obfuscation.
This type of language lacks clarity even when it is innocent. Since obfuscation itself may be a good example of using an unusual word when a common word would do let me use plain English.
Seeking unusual and obscure words is a tool of jargon but jargon is not the only instance. Some fitness writers use uncommon and overly long words because they think it makes them sound more sophisticated.
Why would they want to sound more sophisticated? Because it is effective for many readers. Many people have been fooled into thinking that if they fail to understand the language an article is using it is a sign that they are not intelligent or knowledgeable enough to understand.Journalese definition: a superficial cliché- ridden style of writing regarded as typical of newspapers | Meaning, pronunciation, translations and examples.
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A toolbox for analysing political texts. Discourse analysis is a useful tool for studying the political meanings that inform written and spoken text. In other posts, I have provided a quick video introduction to the topic, and have discussed the ideas behind discourse theory, the main questions that students and researchers will likely ask as they set up their discourse analysis .