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Jargon: The ultimate smoke and mirror

Don't do as I say or as I do...because we are all guilty of jargoning...there I did it just then...I 'jargoned' Meta right.

As I write this, I am reminded of the CIM awards, circa 2012, hosted by the tremendous Ruby Wax. The first award she announced in her fantastic Illinois accent "‘the winner of the multi-media, fully integrated, B2B, in bound digital campaign for a budget under £5,000 is’ then without announcing the winner said ‘what the f@£k is that!’.

So this short journal piece is a thought on Jargon, confusing nomenclature, over wordsmithing (boom another one), we are all guilty of it...let's all stop it. Why do we do it? It is well thought that it is some sort of power play tool to ensure your trade is a 'dark art' or a 'black magic', if you will, that entertains intelligentsia of a magnitude so mighty it requires the respective fee associated. ( Jargonned this to the moon and back).

We think no. One value or cultural asset we try and hold on to is 'imagine if we were being explained something for the first time' and see how that feels when we talk about brand, design, websites. If we think it is confusing, or mysterious or incomprehensible from our own lips then how is our client supposed to get it. OK of course we can err into patronising, we would much prefer to be there than than over-egging the mystique pudding with alien industry terminology. In all truth William of Occam would not be happy if something was complex enough to require an overly florid explanation.

To this end Occam's razor is certainly something that should be heeded when communicating your industry specialism and an absolute of our creative process. As the beautifully lazy species we are, we don't have time to read much anymore so let's make it simple and jargon free. An intelligent tone of voice can come with simplicity, without sacrificing a confidence in your field.

Don't get me wrong, copy writing and playfulness in wording is there to be celebrated and certainly an important creative narrative tool but that should have it's own considered arena.

Make sense? No. OK, in conclusion - don't use jargon.

Author Al Mitchell