Politeness is not just a cleaner dialogue with generic tag-words (please/thank you) on the end of a nasty sentence – it is a customary aspect of being professional and should always be applied when communicating, especially on the page/web-page.
Working part-time in retail has granted me with enough examples of impoliteness and misdirected political correctness to last a life time…or at least until the end of this blog. From ugly attitudes orated through received pronunciation, to harsh letters of complaints which seem almost poetic in voice – I’ve came across every type of masked rudeness there is to come by.
Fortunately, my passion lies with copywriting and I do not let the venom from my day job poison my life. Instead, I use it as ink and channel my anger onto the page (as you can see). However, it is important to remember not to convey such emotion when writing on behalf of a client – even if you’re ‘polite’ with your choice of words.
Never allow your own agenda to infect a post or better yet – don’t have your own agenda at all (other than to complete the contract as best you can). Your own blogs and publications are your literary filters for stress and emotion, confide in them as much as you like.
Unless the contract specifically demands otherwise, polite language is the least a client expects from you. Note – there’s a balance between being polite and being patronising, to avoid the latter you simply need to understand your target audience. For example, it could be patronising to overly stress the importance of clean hands in a surgeon’s handbook, whereas it would be more acceptable to do so for a resident biology student.
The beauty of the web-page is that you can go back and tweak the language to deliver certain messages in certain ways, instead of blabbing carelessly about a subject and accidentally saying something inappropriate. It’s easy to decorate the page with a polite lexicon but it’s pointless to do so if the undertone is tainted.
Looking back over this blog, some could say I’ve patronised every copywriter in the world by discussing such a basic notion of the industry. But you’ve got to remember this is my own blog and not a client’s, therefore I can say whatever I like – you big gang of ‘orrible trolls!
Thank you so much for reading.