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Writing for the Web

It’s a cold, hard fact, but people don’t read on the Web. Certainly they don’t read the Web in the same way they read books, newspapers, or other printed material. Instead, they “scan,” moving about the page looking for isolated nuggets of meaning with a speed and ferocity that borders on manic. If you expect to add value in the midst of this activity, you’ll need to keep a few things in mind.

Be Courteous, not Patronizing

Using a Web application is not like a face-to-face conversation. Although being courteous is still important, simply being relevant and succinct is often the most polite thing you can do. Phrases such as “Please provide us with your email address” are just so much noise when a simple text box labeled “Email” would suffice.


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