Slang words like “cops” and “pigs”, phrases similar to “It’s cool”, and shortened words such as texting terms (“r u”, “2moro”, etc.) are never tolerated in the academic sphere.
What are the most important things in your life?
Nowadays, whatever you are going to tell about – your life, celebrities’ private life, politics, literature or a notice of the day – may take you not more than 140 symbols, and #twitter proves it perfectly. We can more or less easily describe ourselves in 4 words, find our 3 top best features or 2 things we hate about people and choose one dream to come true… Recently different funny twitter marathons became popular like #ReplaceALetterRuinATvShow or #RuinAWeddingIn5Words. They were full of creativity and fun. IMHO such limits teach us to think and to pick catchy words from our vocabulary to express what we want and make other people pay attention to our voices, to listen to us, to follow us and, hopefully, re-tweet us.
The same with the famous #elevatorpitch: imagine you were dreaming to realize the project of your life and only one person can help you, but it is so difficult to reach him or her. Suddenly you meet this person in the elevator (finally!) and you have an opportunity to attract him or her with your fabulous idea: take a chance – but you have only one minute. It reminded one story I have read once on the Internet about one professor and his stuffed jar:
“The professor walks into a classroom and sets a glass jar on the table. He puts 2-inch rocks in the jar until no more can fit. He asks the class if the jar is full and they agree it is. Then, he pulls out a pile of beans, adding them to the jar, shaking it slightly until they fill the spaces between the rocks. He asks again if the jar is full, and they agree. So next, he adds a scoop of sand to the jar, filling the space between the beans and asks the question again. Then he grabs a pitcher of water and fills the jar to the brim, saying, “If this jar is your life, what does this experiment show you?”. Then he looks out at the class and says, “The rocks represent the BIG things in your life – what you will value at the end of your life – your family, your partner, your health, fulfilling your hopes and dreams. The beans are the other things in your life that give it meaning, like your job, your house, your hobbies, your friendships. The sand and water represent the ‘small stuff’ that fills our time. Can you see what would happen if I started with the sand or the beans?” It is very important to remember about BIG things and find proper words to leave your message to the world.
The popularity of #socialmedia makes me think of the power of a letter, the power of each word. How careful we have to be with our expressions, sayings, posts and tweets living during the time when a word is a weapon and the Internet is an information battlefield.