Here's a set of concise headlines that appeared in the online version of our newspaper:
THIS YEAR THERE'S PLENTY OF FLU VACCINE
SHORTAGE LAST YEAR
Everyone 6 months and older should get shot, CDC official says
Did you recognize the unintended misstatement? It needs only the word the to be clear and unmistakable.
Lately I have been seeing tweets and personal updates whose brevity makes them impossible to understand. I skip over them after a brief guess at what the writer meant.
Suggestion: If you tweet or write updates for other social media, make sure your 140 characters make sense. Compose them, go get a cup of coffee or a refreshing drink of water, and then read your words again. Ask yourself whether everyone reading your tweet or update will understand it. If not, revise it to eliminate the confusion.
Have you received brief communications that left you wondering? Feel free to share them if you can do so without mentioning or embarrassing the author.
I am grateful to my friend Margaret for sharing the headlines above. I hope no one got shot!