The Similarity Between Shorthand and Social Media

Posted on December 9, 2018 at 10:05 PM

It didn't take much to convince me as a student, that there was a lot of space between words and their meanings.

Having to write in long hand what my teacher dictated in a lesson, and then change the sentences to condense the meaning , developed my listening skills to hear the intended message. And so it was with a sense of relief that Shorthand was offered as a subject at school, and I enrolled as the attraction to the simplicity of the language seemed a progression of the written word.

Shorthand opened up a realm of possibilities for me, as longhand writing took away attention that could otherwise be used to listen to the order and meaning of the words spoken. Traditional longhand notes had previously kept me busy and sometimes missing the point, to keeping up with the speaker. I was not given the opportunity to think about what I was writing, as I was often behind the teacher's lecture to question their point of view (correcting spelling, grammar etc). However with Shorthand, instead of being left behind, I was able to think ahead to where the conversation was going. This is where Shorthand trains one to listen only to the sound and shape of a word. I could accentuate the strokes to indicate what was in bold and needed to be emphasized, and dependent upon where the word sat on the line or below it, decide how it was be to used to join the sentence.

With Shorthand, one could skip over the small injunctions to connect the greater message. I was hooked. Similarly to how Social Media uses a hook to get the attention of the reader. You may notice how short a heading is, and yet how it can successfully deliver the body of the message to its audience. Not all messages can encourage audience participation with the bare minimum of words. It is the note taker who is responsible for capturing the spoken word that ensures the message is given across accurately. Often the heading is accompanied by an image that can give the title more depth.

The beauty of Shorthand is that the written symbol represents the spoken message, without the need of unnecessary flourish. I am not saying that flourish is unwanted. Some stories are best written as novels, such as Shakespeare. The reader is engaged through the use of exaggerated and period wording as this helps to create the scene for the audience.

There is a duty to the reader when having their attention. Part is to keep the reader up with the story line, and part is to fill in the gaps that may otherwise have been spoken. To enable you to understand where the link between Shorthand and Social Media is, the following Heading may assist:

Longhand : Why Go Where No Man Has Bothered To Go Before

Shorthand : Go Where No Man Has Gone Before

The beauty of Shorthand is in its simplicity to deliver the message.



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