statements of the bleedin’ obvious – Cribb and Sari still

“Another common error in science writing is the use of ‘statements of the bleedin’ obvious’. Poorly written science articles often begin with one of these (perhaps because scientific papers usually do, as they proceed from what is well known to what has just been discovered). In science writing there is no such need. In fact, the use of such statements interferes with the telling of the story as they force the reader over dull and familiar ground, rather than telling them at once what is new and fresh. In a world awash with new information, concealing the main point of a science story behind obvious or well-known facts only reduces the number of people who will read it and use the knowledge. Most do not want to waste time reading about things they already know, so they rapidly browse on to something more stimulating. Statements of the bleedin’ obvious are the enemy of good science writing and should be avoided, especially in journalism and media releases.” (p.28)

Ref: (emphases in blue bold, mine) Julian Cribb and Tjempaka Sari (2010) Open Science: sharing knowledge in the global century. CSIRO Publishing: Collingwood


About backyardbooks

This blog is a kind of electronic storage locker for ideas and quotes that inform my research... literary research into fiction for young adults (with a special focus on New Zealand fiction). Kiwis are producing amazing literature for younger readers, but it isn't getting the academic appreciation it deserves. I hope readers of this blog can make use of the material I gather and share by way of promoting our fiction. Cheers!
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