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Jakarta Post

Speaking in sound bites

  • Indira Pintak


  /   Sun, October 17 2010   /  11:10 am

The virtues of keeping conversation short and to the point.Being married to a former CBS war correspondent, living in the United States and watching American television programming for more than a decade has taught me one thing: to speak in sound bites when the occasion calls for it. Unfortunately, the occasions are more frequent than I’d like, because people are increasingly losing the ability to remain focused on content unless the pertinent point is delivered within the first 15 seconds (or less) of opening one’s mouth. Just take a look at any US news or pseudo-news program and you will see what I mean. The phenomenon of speaking in short sentences, some say, is an effect of the rapid growth of satellite and cable TV channels, the 24-hour news cycle and the all-around jostling of TV programs vying for an audience. Further encouraging communication in very succinct messages is the ...