Communicational composition and phraseology
Our Neo-Digital Correspondent
… As for writing style, strive for convoluted, obscure, and pseudointellectual.
the vocality of LAWA
Establishing an undeviating phonetic for LAWA is a predominant preoccupation for the participatory-players. With multi-vocal participants, and the requirement to transliterate Byzantine scientific knowledge, clarity of conveyance is imperative. The vocality is charged to be affable-congenial, calculable and dependable, with a certain dominion (in actuality, LAWA was conceptualised as enunciating in a neo-Attenborough (viz., Sir David Attenborough) style.
Credibility may not be optimally furthered by an aloof scholastic tonality. Tuftian theory (2006, p.142) posits “passive verbs ... advance effects without causes, an immaculate conception”; using an orthodox passive-professorial lexicon appears ostensibly unencumbered by bias, but it additionally registers as de-situated.
The predominant tenor emanating with accord from the multi-participatory dialogue conclave at the inception of the process was the necessity to, in a sense, comprehend the very nature of LAWA. Partakers in the convocation specifically queried the neutrality of LAWA, posing the question, can this undertaking exist in a state of non-partisan, non-tendentious being? Can it obtain an optima-neutral state?
Maintaining dialogic tonal equilibrium is involuted and fraught with complexity. In establishing rhetorical parity between 'the consensus' and alternative 'received wisdoms', is a pseudo-reality created where rigour and bavardage are given equal charge? Does this not produce a perversion of circumstance?
The incumbent personnel within regional legislative bodies were tasked with providing a geo-narrative focused on their locale. The responses were devoid of heterogeneity, especially regarding substantive subjectivity.
Some councils sought to balance suboptimal aqua-clarity performance through their monologue. Others projected objectivity in both tone and substance. If the varietal quality is homogenised into a uniform vocalisation, is the readership's attunement to subtle signifiers compromised? Reconciliation of these themes is extant.
Within the Participatory Engagement section, dialogues from myriad perspectives – much like opinions intra-Comment sections of a paper-media journal – should be enabled (and authorial provenance should be established).
Open Lab hypothesised that LAWA should enable the stimulus of organisation-user or trans-user dialogue. It was conceptualised that users should be enabled to engage in participatory conversation about place, contributing without encumbrance to the geo-specific pages intra-LAWA.
The LAWA Orientation Body, after cogitation, vetoed participatory online conversation, on the basis that inadequate amenity was available to arbitrate if sub-optimal (from a reputational perspective) schools of thought were vocalised.
Ultimately, accommodation was made for multi-viewpoint contributions via a documentary mechanism which enabled crowd-sourced offerings to be 'arranged' by a site curator.
The LAWA Orientation Body felt that agitators, positing undesirable attitudinal mindsets and bent on negatively critiquing the regional legislative bodies, may be used to pillory said bodies.
Clearly, there is, figuratively, a delicate balance to be struck between exercising power of veto over uncivil postulation, and impeding vigorous discourse. If a narrative of transparency is a desirable, nay vital component of the reputational matrix, can any degree of moderation be justified?
Latterly, the internet-enabled journal Popular Science terminated open interchange via written digital response to their crafted treatise on the basis that “a fractious minority wields enough power to skew a reader's perception of a story” (LaBarre, 2013). They assert:
A politically motivated, decades-long war on expertise has eroded the popular consensus on a wide variety of scientifically validated topics. Everything, from evolution to the origins of climate change, is mistakenly up for grabs again. Scientific certainty is just another thing for two people to "debate" on television. And because comments sections tend to be a grotesque reflection of the media culture surrounding them, the cynical work of undermining bedrock scientific doctrine is now being done beneath our own stories, within a website devoted to championing science.
Popular Science have rechanneled dialogue beyond their online domain, into 'social media' conduits. Further, they used the Google Hangout fora to confer with participatory-groups who utilise and patronise their digital space, and who had vocalised a range of perspectives (Ward, 2013).
The progenitor of the policy decision was increasingly impertinent conduct and a substantive and advancing corpus suggesting that people conflate their experience within the unfettered utterances of non-expert contributors with the substantive treatise under editorial purview (Ward, 2013). Ultimately though, their decision was additionally a consequence of insufficiency in human resource provision.
Further, Popular Science posit that translocating the discourse onto 'social media' platforms encourages people to “be themselves”, as they are acting under their own moniker, thus to a lesser degree likely to conduct themselves without due regard to social nicety.
'Social media' integration is, from the perspective of Open Lab, a utility-tool to further neo-digital dialogue, but the LAWA Orientation Body remain irresolute. 'Social media' confers credibility by proclaiming that there are bona fide 'real people' behind an organisation. It must, however, be judiciously orchestrated, and – as the LAWA Orientation Body rightly raise – have adequate allotment of resource, or the risk to credibility (from an unanswered question or vexed pronouncement that is not responded to) is excessive. 'Social media' (if prudently guided) affords the development of trust, and can generate public-authored contributional-dialogue for the 'digital place' to maximise contemporaneity (a WCP credibility guideline).
The purpose of fact-dossiers, narratives and experiential happenings placed within LAWA is to project a dimension of animation around otherwise relatively dry science; ‘delivering narrative dialogues’ about the leitmotifs of freshwater.
Composing the 'science' with contextual and attitude-perspectival information may assist LAWA in projecting an air of equipoise, and build social presence.
Within Making Good, I expand the assembly of social presence yet further, by using self-disclosure (Lowenthal & Dunlap, 2010) as apparatus. This is experimental vis a vis the 'construction of credibility', but I feel it is appropriate given the avant garde nature of this exercise.