New India Manifesto – Chapter 13: Global Writing Style
The journals, research papers and other academic publications use different styles, such as APA, MLA, and Chicago styles for academic documents. Unfortunately, these styles aimed at consistency in writing are a burden that affects research output. The problem with styles like these is that they are intended to increase the aesthetic value of the presentation rather than the document’s value.
Adding words, numbers and symbols as part of intext citations and parenthetical citations are common for all these academic documents. The referencing system is so extensive and varied for each writing style. Excessive emphasis is placed on the styling of documents, font and even passive voice usage. The researchers attempt to present simple things in complex sentences and apply hard-to-read words. For example, if the term ‘sesquipedalian’ is used instead of saying ‘long words’, how would a reader feel about it? It will be helpful if the research is on developing the English language. However, this approach to making things more complex is not justifiable in the sciences and social sciences.
Researchers Use Complex Language Because of These Reasons
- The first reason is that they know that term and want to show others that knowledge even though there is another simple term.
- The second reason is that researchers feel that adding words makes their journal or research articles worthy of reading. They think that their intelligence is measured by others using the findings and theories and the vocabulary they use. If they use ordinary words, their contributions would be considered silly and hard words would be the best way to solve this issue.
- They are writing research theories and journals intending the readers to be colleagues and seniors, and impressing them is a priority. Students and ordinary people are not even considered in this process.
- Academic publications will approve journals and articles only if complex writing styles are followed and they are not concerned about the quality of content generated using these rules.
When a person writes a journal, article or research document, they must pause between sentences to ensure that styling standards are met. As a result, there is a hindrance to the flow of ideas in their thought process, and the output quality is affected due to the interference of the writing style.
Placing restrictions and structural order on the writer’s mind along with the research subject severely affects the output. According to neuropsychologists’ the brain can focus only on a single task at a time. Adding a referencing style along with a research topic is an attempt to promote multitasking, and switching between both tasks will increase research time. In terms of productivity, a significant percentage of time can be saved if all current referencing styles and in-text citations are removed.
There are different reading mindsets, such as a student reading a journal for a project, a book reviewer, a curiosity-based reader and a peer reviewer. The information is read and analysed in all these types of reading mindsets. When the citation and referencing system keeps interfering throughout the reading, it will affect the expansion of the reader’s mind . Did your mind suddenly pause when you saw the number two in the previous sentence? While reading this section, you were travelling through a particular vibe, and suddenly, when the number 2 is viewed, a brake is applied. Now you may have to reread the thread to ensure continuity. When you reread the sentence, you are aware of the presence of 2 and your mind and thought process will skip it. It is a waste of time for the reader. Reading articles, journals, and research works is not popular in India because complex language, citation systems, and referencing systems are challenging for the common masses to comprehend.
Global Writing Style or GWS
Global Writing Style is aimed at replacing or being an addition to existing styles.
Significant characteristics of GWS include
- When we read a document, we should be able to analyse that information without any hindrances and complexities freely. Complex words should be used only if they are necessary. Grammar usage should be correct, as the meaning should be preserved in the process. Adding additional rules, such as using only active voice, is irrelevant.
- Research works, journals, and articles should be simple and straightforward. This approach is why news articles are easy to read, as they use layman’s language.
- Intext citations and parenthetical citations should never be used. If a source reference is required, it can be added after the journal or article. If a piece of information is needed to be added inside a paragraph, it should be added in a non-intrusive way. For example, Person A coined the term RTY in 1970 in the book QWERTY. A piece of information can be presented in this way; this is the only way it can be done without breaking the continuity of reading. The researcher can quote the work and author and avoid everything else in the case of the source text. The exact page number of the source text and such extreme detailing is not required. Readers can browse it in this internet era if they want to learn further. No particular order is necessary to mention sources; the order can be decided according to the writer’s convenience. No reader will check the source line by line or order by order, as the research content is what is valued.
- There is no fixed way in global writing style as you can use paragraph method, pointwise detailing or any other method that provides information in easy to understand manner. The purpose of the writings should be to inform a piece of information and not to decorate information. You can also use images and graphics to present research. People can present it in animation work or videos if writing is not felt enough. The animated work will be considered on par with the research journal if it is worth watching.
- Any other shortcomings that hinder the writer and reader should be removed, and only minimal rules, such as proper grammar, should be applied in Global Writing Style. In the case of grammar, too, they need to be checked by the writer only after writing the whole work, thereby not affecting the thought process while writing the work.
- Once GWS is introduced, it will increase the pace of innovations in the world as information understandability increases, and it will be less time-consuming for readers to analyse data. In addition, GWS ensure unlimited freedom to explore for the writer.
- The use of junk information to increase the word count of research papers and journals will be reduced. There must be a flow of information when things are attempted to be explained innovatively and understandably. In most research, copied content from already published works of others is emphasised using referencing systems, and the researcher’s contributions are minimal. In GWS, the emphasis is on personal contribution instead of others’ contribution, as there are no citations. A robust plagiarism detection system will ensure there will be only necessary content from external sources.
A national authority in India should approve the works in a centralised portal to ensure that only plagiarism-free original content is promoted. Furthermore, all universities and educational institutions should connect to this portal to ensure free accessibility.
Special Note: This is the thirteenth chapter of the book New India Manifesto by Blessen T. Sam. The concepts introduced in this book are unique, and referencing the book and the author is appreciated. Support the hard work of the author to modernise India by purchasing a print copy of the book from Amazon or Flipkart.