Mastering the art of bullshit used to be a badge of respect in college. After all, who wouldn’t want to have the ability to write endlessly about a topic without having to really ever say anything? I suppose it prepares people well for the business world where this type of nonsensical writing is often expected. I recently visited www.fightthebull.com, a site (and book) dedicated to helping business people not sound like idiots (no easy task). They offer a downloadable tool that isolates bullshit in presentations and word documents and helps you get rid of it.
Bull has become the official language of business. Every day, we get bombarded by an endless stream of filtered, jargon-filled corporate speak, all of which makes it harder to get heard, harder to be authentic, and definitely harder to have fun.
But why do we avoid paying the same attention to marketing or other business language and continuously create Dilbert-style idiotic communications instead? Probably because they are easier, and most are under the mistaken belief that using this language makes them seem smarter. It sometimes seems the only safe haven where good writing does usually prevail is in advertising copywriting. In that environment, every word counts and clients are paying for creativity or effectiveness. For the rest of us marketers, perhaps downloading Bullfighter is our only hope.