ELEMENTS of POLITICAL COMMUNICATION: General Writing Guidelines – Accessibility

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Don’t get frustrated with the details of formatting. Write in whatever medium you’re comfortable using, but submit it in the appropriate format to whomever is responsible for publication. Use quotation marks to differentiate "buzzwords" sparingly. Avoid italicizing, bolding, underlining, or capitalizing to emphasize words or phrases. Writers can exclude portions of their audience by writing in an unfamiliar or awkward format. Instead, convey the meaning in your content without using awkward formatting. Use a readable typeface and avoid using only colors to differentiate text, especially red for editing marks (7 percent of American males cannot detect the difference between red and green.)[1] Do not use all caps. This is especially true when writing for traditional print media. Editors will ignore most of your formatting marks, and these changes can alter the meaning of your sentence. Rewrite any sentences with this kind of formatting to ensure this doesn't happen.


Examples[edit]

Inappropriate quotation marks to differentiate
Warning These supposed "party members" are extremists.
Example These party members are extremists.

Adding the word "supposed" or putting a word or phrase in quotation marks is not a legitimate way to call something into question.

Awkward markup
Warning The truth is that he has been a PATRIOT throughout the campaign.
Example The truth is that he has been a patriot throughout the campaign.

This sentence is just as effective without the inappropriate formatting.

Self quiz[edit]

Which sentence is the most effective?
A.
B.
C.
D.

(ABCD), because [explanation]

Which sentence is the most effective?
A.
B.
C.
D.

(ABCD), because [explanation]

Which sentence is the most effective?
A.
B.
C.
D.

(ABCD), because [explanation]

Which sentence is the most effective?
A.
B.
C.
D.

(ABCD), because [explanation]

Notes[edit]

Accuracy