THE RISE OF ROBO-JOURNALISM

THE RISE OF ROBO-JOURNALISM - COULD THIS ARTICLE BE WRITTEN BY A MACHINE?

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Recently I have been writing a lot about automation, machine-learning, artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, the Fourth Industrial Revolution and so on. In short: the transformation of life as we know it. The rising power of AI and robots is scary stuff, if you think about it long enough. Not least when those in the know warn that AI is a "risk to human existence" - Elon Musk, Tesla Co-founder, in this instance. And then there's world-renowned physicist Professor Stephen Hawking saying that AI could be "the worst event in the history of our civilization".

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FINDING HYGGE IN COPENHAGEN

FINDING HYGGE IN COPENHAGEN – WHAT IS THIS WORD AND HOW CAN IT MAKE US HAPPY?

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As a lover of words, this one stumped me. For a while I pronounced it ‘higgy’, like ‘piggy’. But on my recent adventures to Copenhagen I’ve learnt it’s pronounced ‘hoo-guh’. And even then, whenever I said the H word to a Dane, giggles would ensue. But despite the linguistic hurdles, ‘finding hygge’ was both an intriguing and heart-warming pursuit – and I intend to channel it into my life from now on.

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R.I.P. JARGON

R.I.P. JARGON: Is corporate lingo and ‘alien speak’ killing off communication with your customers?

MY TOP 5 JARGON HIT LIST

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Acronyms: not the word acronym per se, but the use of acronyms in so much marketing and comms copy. LSE is the London School of Economics. It’s also the London Stock Exchange. In other parts of the world it’s god knows what. So don’t alienate your reader (aka (!) your customer or client) by not letting him or her into your secret club. Just spell it out. Don’t even get me started on abbreviations like COP, EOY, YTD, MOM. The amounts of times I’ve had to google what corporate acronyms mean is ludricrous – and FYI, it’s also a bit lazy.

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HEADLINES: YOUR BIGGEST HOOK FOR NEW BUSINESS

HEADLINES ARE LIKE BAIT ON A FISHING ROD. YOU NEED TO REEL IN CUSTOMERS WITH YOUR WORDS.

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Q. Blogs, brochures, ads, articles, websites, newsletters, emails. What do they have in common?
A. They all need punchy, catchy headlines to pull in the punters.

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INSIDER INFO

INSIDER INFO:  5 tips for writing catchy website copy . . . (by a copywriter who’s just re-written her own).

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I write website copy for many clients. I stick to the rules and I get results. But, here’s a thing: when I started writing the copy for my own new website (thepowerofwords.co.uk ) I went a bit off-piste. I started breaking all the rules. I think I got rather over-excited and carried away. I started rambling, waffling, telling people information they didn’t need or want to know. I gave myself a slap and started again. So, here’s a reminder of the main dos and don’ts, while they’re fresh in my mind.

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