How much attention do the various nooks and crannies within our sprawling organism called “government” pay to writing, speaking, posting, or tweeting in plain language? During the interviews that resulted in my becoming a technical writer/editor with ATF, one hiring decision maker stressed that one of my tasks would be to “show [the department] how to write in English.”
Having been here for several months, I’m not sure that the decision maker meant what she said.
That’s okay; change comes slowly. This is not a rant. It is, rather, a query.
How important is plain language in the department, bureau, office, cubicle where you work? What techniques are effective in getting writers to adhere to the principles found on PlainLanguage.gov and similar sites? Is it worth starting a group to share ideas and encouragement? Or does such a group already exist here, and I just haven’t found it yet?
I suspect that the Plain Language movement might be on life support (or less), and I’m curious to see what interest there might be in resuscitating it, if possible or even necessary. I look forward to your comments, ideas, and input.