I love a good style guide. And I applaud anyone encouraging the use of clear English. But the GOV.UK style guide, produced by the United Kingdom’s Government Digital Service (GDS) for the GOV.UK website (the new portal bringing together all, or most, of the UK’s government websites), is really bugging me. More specifically, the part on plain […]

Voting is now open for the Top 100 Language Blogs 2012 competition organised by LexioPhiles, for which we’ve been nominated in the “Language Professionals” category. Voting takes place from 15 to 28 May 2012. If you’d like to vote for Words to good effect, you can do so here. Thank you! PS Having chosen a name that […]

One of the participants at the Web-Writing Webinar on 11 April asked me how translators should deal with keywords when working on website translations. The question threw me for a minute, but I realised afterwards (as you do) that the answer should have been: “With great caution”. Selecting keywords is an important part of the […]

One of the slides I used for the Web-Writing Webinar on 11 April asked the question: Users with accessibility or usability issues. Who are they? The answer was: All of us. We all at one time or another (indeed eventually) become less able: you fall and sprain your wrist, get repetitive strain injury, you get […]

I’m delighted and honoured that eCPD Webinars has invited me to present a web-writing webinar on 11.30 am (UK time) on Wednesday 11 April 2012. While eCPD focuses on continual professional development for translators, Wednesday’s webinar will include tips and insights for anyone interested in writing good web copy. It will also give you an overview […]

Have you got any website words that set your teeth on edge? “Passionate” is one of mine, as in “we’re passionate about quality” (or about our work, our clients etc). First, it’s over-used and doesn’t do anything to distinguish company A from company B. If everybody’s passionate about their work and their clients, where’s the […]

One of my clients told me recently that their company is re-doing its website. They’re working with web-designers and -developers, copy-writers, graphic designers and search-engine optimisation (SEO) specialists based in Spain, the US and various Italian cities. The client, a company based in north-east Italy, already works with designers and suppliers based in Spain, Denmark, […]

An e-flyer arrived in my inbox last Thursday from the Italian Tourism Summit organisers. It read: La tripla crisi del turismo italiano: come uscirne, soluzioni e formule 4 June 2009 – Ascoli Piceno Consulta il programma e… …Partecipa! Did this tell me what the triple crisis afflicting Italian tourism is? No, it did not. So […]

Governments around the world are doing everything they can to rename swine flu. They will not succeed and will end up misinforming the public.  Gerry McGovern’s latest “New Thinking” newsletter is about Governments’ attempts to rename swine flu. He focuses on the disconnect between government and international agencies’ concerns: national pride, religious sensibilities, business interests; […]