random, Random opinions, reading

TL;DR Too long, Didn’t read


I’m afraid I’m not the TL;DR generation. I want information. I’m the sort of person that finds something mildly intriguing and then takes a massive deep dive into research to find out way more about it. Just because. Like some sort of weirdo who likes to read and learn new things. Almost obsessively.

And I suppose that really is weird because even with my group of friends I am that person that knows a little about a lot of things because I took these thought paths down random trails on a whim. And end up with a crapton of random knowledge stuffed in my head that isn’t particularly useful… but I just had a fancy to know. And I get seriously into some subjects for long periods of time because I need to really, really KNOW it. But when I do… I switch to the next obsession. And this is how I ended up with five hobbies.

Too Long

This is a serious thing now. When I started blogging (on my long, long enduring blog.) Content had to be sufficient to capture people’s actual attention, back in the day. Now you have to be super brief because no one has any attention. We actually have been trained by social media for engagement– mindless attention engagement. Like Pavlov’s dog bing bling a notification, check your phone you have a notification… better start scrolling too and it is specifically catered to keep you engaged for as long as possible.

I do freelance writing for a site and they have instructed us writers to keep articles to 500-700 words because that is literally the patience level of readers. I was like WOW. I write blog posts on my other blog Min 1000 words. So Now I have to figure out a way to get information across in like an actual outline format.

Literally- just headlines and pointers. That’s all people have time for.

Or, and I have done this, make three blog posts for the price of one! I mean, sure, no issue with content then but seems weird to me. But we do have to cater to our audience as well. People do not go to my blog for blurbs or teeny tiny sound bites. So there is that.

Some types of articles people like to digest quickly and other content can be slightly longer. Still, I think I will have to cut my word count to compete with the read time expectations people now have.

Our attention

I had watched a documentary on social media that basically had said research determined our dependence on social media and its dopamine hits to the brain was steadily decreasing our capacity to focus. That is what made for the change in content requirements as people had less and less attention spans and patience to read anything with detail. Which is frightening when you think about all the sorts of articles you really want research, facts and Details IN.

I didn’t quite believe that. However, I do understand how social media is designed psychologically to be habit forming. And I certainly know that everyone has less time, less patience, and is bombarded with a crapton of content.

A lot of people simply don’t have the time to indulge in reading a blog, for example. So they listen to an audiobook or a podcast in traffic, or on the bus, or at lunch… in the gaps of the day. Maybe read a book on the weekend. We all have different consumption habits of non-fiction and fiction habits. And we have a lot of options these days to do just that. But it is also true a lot of content is created to fit into those tiny gaps of our day these days.

We do choose when and where to direct our attention. What formats to use. How much time to spend. And, if I choose to binge 5 books in 5 days, well, that is how I roll. I don’t do that All the time. But sometimes I am in a real serious reading Mood. And if I choose to take a deep dive into a new theory in quantum physics I read about because it tickled my fancy, maybe that makes me weird, but it is my time to waste. Or any other random thing I came across in the various things that interest me.

Didn’t Read

Another issue is even if you write you insanely brief condensed post some people do not read it at all. Not even browse the headers, which, seriously some people just do that.

But they read the title. And they have opinions. Lots of opinions. Based on your title. To which I often reply ‘Well, we all can see who Didn’t even read the first sentence of this article’.

But even the headers are not really going to give you much insight into the content… not enough to rant and rage over it anyway… but some people sure Do. And that gives me one hell of a giggle.

Like I said, we all have ways to consume information in the format we desire. We have so many formats to choose from these days. So if it is TL;DR for that reason, no biggie. We all are busy. But if someone actually comments and rages on the title or headers and didn’t actually read… that sort of is annoying. Read it. Don’t. There isn’t really a middle ground.

But in the end, people that say TL;DR didn’t read this. 😉

See more posts

Short story read: Telepathy and Pizza
Poem read: The year that never happened
My art to check out

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