The main takeaway from this reading was the idea that published pieces are malleable forms of communication that are meant to be retold and restructured. In fact, these pieces are most effective when they can be “remixed” because it is human nature to try to reimagine and create new ideas from older ones. A successful piece is one that many people use to try formulate their own idea. To this end, it is important for an author to think of their work almost as a spark to start a larger conversation.
One of the first mechanics of piece to consider is its delivery. Whether it comes in the form of a brochure, magazine article, editorial, or video is important because these each have different methods of dispensing information. Some formats are easier to digest than others. It is important for an author to decide which of these formats best allows for communicating the data. For one of my pieces, I chose to create a brochure. These are limited in space to display information so only the strongest arguments can be made or only the most damning statistics can be included. This can also be a blessing, however, as most readers are only looking for eye-catching statistics that they can regurgitate later.
Another thing to keep in mind is amplification. Because of social media, anything can become viral and rack up millions of views. This is something that came to mind when I wrote my editorial. The most successful articles I have read on Facebook have very similar qualities. They are usually hosted on a well-known site, such as NPR or The Atlantic, and call out that our political climate is heading for the apocalypse. I chose to try to replicate these ideas in my editorial. Another idea I thought about was the way I collected my information. All the statistics I presented were taken from other articles I read while doing research and then recomposed to fit the needs of my editorial. I only retained the best figures and points so the next person reads can repurpose them to suit their needs.