I was inspired to write this post by a terrific piece at Wired, it seemed to go well with my “some guy on the internet” post the other day. The satirical wired piece recommends the following for appearing to be an expert:
- PICK A FIELD THAT CAN’T BE VERIFIED.
- CHOOSE A SUBJECT THAT’S ACTUALLY SECRET.
- GET YOUR OWN ENTRY IN AN ENCYCLOPEDIA.
- USE THE WORD ZEITGEIST AS OFTEN AS POSSIBLE.
- BE SURE TO USE LOTS OF ABBREVIATIONS AND ACRONYMS.
- SPEAK FROM THE BALLS, NOT FROM THE DIAPHRAGM.
- DON’T BE AFRAID TO MAKE THINGS UP.
- DON’T LIMIT YOURSELF TO CURRENT KNOWLEDGE.
- GET AN HONORARY PHD.
- MAKE A HABIT OF NAME-DROPPING.
- BE FAMOUS. IT HELPS.
Crazy thing is I think there are bloggers out there taking his advice!
I tend to read quite a lot of technical blogs to keep my knowledge of geek stuff fresh. You wouldn’t believe how many times I sit there shaking my head at all the acronyms, “leveraging paradigms” marketese and technobabble that goes on. Most of the time it’s just not necessary and on the rare occasions it is necessary it is only polite to explain or link to a definition somewhere, right?
I’m sure I don’t have to mention any blogs by name where the author talks from the balls either. Some bloggers need to calm down on the ol’ testosterone. Sure it is great to have confidence, and go right ahead and be forthright, just don’t beat us over the head with it.
Making stuff up and dredging up old knowledge is now so refined in the SEO space it is practically an art form. Just look at the comments in Digg or Technorati over the coming days commenting on Nicks SEO post for verification.
The name dropping is the best one. Some bloggers make an art of it. Erm, just because you met Tom Cruise doesn’t mean you are suddenly an expert on acting (or Scientology), heh.
Having said this, I can do without fame or an encyclopaedia entry but I would love to get me a honorary PHD. Or a degree of any kind …
Read the full article, it is funny stuff.