“Any chance of an English-language version of that press release?” (The pitfalls of tech jargon)


I recently shared this piece: “Why journalists are ignoring your press releases“ on LinkedIn. Point 5 particularly resonated, stating: “It’s too full of jargon” and suggested: “keep it simple and use plain, clear English. Imagine you’re telling a friend – or even a child – about the story and you should have it about right.”

This is very good advice. Working with tech stories, you inevitably find yourself dealing with mystifying three letter abbreviations, vertical ‘slang’ and impenetrable technology terminology. This may be the lingo of your industry, and to be fair, it is (usually) very precise in its meaning. But to everyone else: gobbledygook.

The key to a good press release is to always, always, remember your audience. Journalists – even journalists dealing with technology on a day-to-day basis - still might not be completely familiar with the inner intricacies of ‘reference designs and test systems to wireless infrastructure OEM topologies’ say, or the finer points of “selective field-wise viewing of various packets, filtering options, identification of the nodes by user-applied labelling.” Shocking, I know.

So, be fair. Make it accessible. Write it in plain English. Otherwise, your press release is more than likely going in the bin.

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