What's Your Take on myTakes?

I was going to post another proper MyTake tonight, probably something about social justice or politics or something like that. But just as I was about to write it I thought "what's the point." Sure, the MyTake will probably be promoted (as an editor, it can be demoted, but only if it's really bad, otherwise it's automatically promoted). And it will probably get a few replies. But ultimately it's just another MyTake in a sea of MyTakes. I'm probably tired of whatever I'm writing about so I have to fake enthusiasm. And in the end I'm just looking for something to fill my weekly MyTake quota. And rarely, if ever, am I happy with how the MyTake turns out. And half the time I'm falling asleep when I'm writing it. And the audience response is just as lukewarm. Half of the replies indicate the MyTake wasn't read. I'm not blaming anybody- I don't even have the patience to read through my entire MyTake before posting it.

Instead of repeating that cycle, and getting burnt-out writing MyTakes I've decided to change my approach to writing MyTakes. I want the MyTakes I post to be fresh, exciting, and different. I want to try something new. Not just serialize them- something truly new. Something that has never been done before.

I recently bought a computer so I could start making Youtube videos. I can't wait to start. But some topics don't work well for a Youtube video. Some topics work better in MyTake form.

I have a few ideas for how I can make my MyTakes awesome and enjoyable, but in order to truly achieve that, I need some community feedback. So this MyTake is going to be something a little bit different. I will be asking a series of questions/taking a survey. Answer these questions as best you can and tell me whether you are a MyTake writer, a MyTake reader, or both.

Long or short?

Your takes on MyTakes?

More pictures or less pictures?

Multiple styles or just one?

THIS

OR

This

Introduction or no introduction?

"Let's get right into the news. Big news in the community this week. Two Youtubers are BRAWLING in public."

Vs.

"Two Youtubers were caught brawling in public this week"

Extra humor?

This one requires a little explaining. I don't know if everybody does this, but I always try to crowbar in some joke or mildly amusing tidbit to entertain the reader. Do any other writers do this? Do you, as a reader enjoy this. Would you appreciate less natural humor or more forced humor.

Engaging?

Do you like being asked to share your thoughts, or is that unnecessary because you can do that as is? Should the writer make an effort to reach out to the reader and get their thoughts and opinions, or is that unnecessary and cheapens the overall MyTake?

Breaks?

Statistics and studies?

While they strengthen a point of view, statistics and studies can also exhaust the reader. Do you prefer having this additional info/providing this additional info or would you rather it be left out/leave it out.

Formal or informal?

College or HS level vocabulary?

Serialized or standalone?

Organized or jumbled?

Meticulously planned or on the spot?

Be as detailed as you would like regarding what you do and do not like when it comes to reading MyTakes. Any information helps.


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What Girls Said 2

  • 2mo

    They can be very informative if they are well written, it's rather hard to write a take though, haha.

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  • 2mo

    The answer to ALL the style and formatting questions -- and to the "planned vs. impromptu" question -- is "Whatever comes most naturally to you".
    If you're writing in a style that clashes with yr "defaults" -- however literally you want to take that word -- then that will be obvious enough.

    __

    BREAKS:
    YES YES YES YES YESSSSSSSSS

    The world would be a MUCH better place if literally no one ever wrote a paragraph longer than 100 words... EVER.

    __

    STATISTICS/STUDIES:

    This is why hyperlinks exist.

    __

    FORMAL/INFORMAL:

    Honestly, dude, the total number of people IN THE WHOLE WORLD who can write FORMAL prose **that isn't mind-numbingly boring** might actually be a single- or double-digit number.
    In the whole world.

    It's DEFINITELY not more than a triple-digit number. In the whole world.

    A good example of someone who COULD write non-boring formal prose was William F. Buckley, Jr.
    Can YOU write as well as William F. Buckley, Jr?
    If not... Informal.
    Dude.
    At the very most semi-formal.

    __

    "College or HS level vocabulary?"

    ^^ If you use more than 1 or 2 words of "college-level vocabulary", then yr writing is BAD WRITING.
    It's purple prose.

    Purple prose is bad writing, period.

    A "big" word should be used ONLY when that single word -- **and not any simpler word** -- can replace what would otherwise be a whole line (or two, or three) of text.
    ANY other use of "big" words is... bad writing.

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    • 2mo

      Thank you for your feedback.

      I think you're right about breaks. Long paragraphs exhaust the readers.

      Hyperlinks are just links? Or are they something else. I've noticed the infinity symbol- I assume that has something to do with hyperlinks, but I've never actually used it.

      I agree with you; informal prose is the way to go. Grammatically correct and spelled correctly, but simple and easy to understand. I actual prefer that writing style. Formal sounds too forced.

      I didn't know who William F. Buckley jr. was, so I looked him up- he's a very good writer. One of the few who use that formal style correctly.

      I agree with you there. Proper usage is vital. I wouldn't say big words make for bad writing, if they are used properly. They can be more descriptive then their similar counterparts. But when they are used for the sake of using them, that's kind of an issue.

    • 2mo

      Sometimes informal writing is annoying. Like take yourself as an example. You add "hahahahaah" or in whatever way you laugh, it makes the myTake difficult to read. Yeah it's good to add some emotions, but personally, I think they are good only if you are posting opinions. myTakes are closer to articles and they are supposed to be more serious.

    • 2mo

      Hyperlinks are just links, yeah. (So, if something that obviously *should* have a citation appears in a different color, then you can just click it.)

      I've seen other styles, but, those other styles always have definite and clear reasons for them.
      For instance, Wikipedia sources are linked with those footnote numbers (which themselves are hyperlinks), rather than with hyperlinks themselves -- but that's only because Wikipedia has a strict policy of only allowing hyperlinks to lead to other Wikipedia pages.

      --

      "[Big words] can be more descriptive then their similar counterparts"

      ^^ Yeah that's my point -- If some $5 word replaces what would otherwise have been an entire line or two of text, then it's perfect.
      Just like explosives can replace weeks' worth of digging and tunneling.

What Guys Said 5

  • 2mo

    This reply is for the author as well as for other Editors and really, anyone who wants to write myTakes:

    First thing to remember is that you have to get out of this mindset that GaG exists in some sort of magical bubble, where the only people who see your work are GaG members. myTakes get spread outside the site because we try to help you make them "digitally click-able" with good headlines, good media, an overall good presentation, etc. This makes it more likely to show up in Google searches, for example, and we push Featured Takes in other ways as well. We also spread great Takes on our Facebook page (which, if you hadn't noticed, has 175K Likes).

    Too many people think that if a Take gets only a few replies here that it just failed. But they have no idea how many overall views it might've gotten, or who may have read it outside GaG. Many times, even pieces that don't get many comments here do exceedingly well around the internet, even if the author doesn't always notice. In short, you're posting a Take on GaG but this is the internet and we actively try to put GaG's best work in front of as many eyes as possible.

    Of course, Takes that generate a great reaction here on the site are great as well, because community engagement is important. It's just not the ONLY parameter for success; it's just the most visible to members.

    The other thing to remember is that you're always free to write about whatever you want. :) Granted, there are certain types of Takes that will perform better, and I do give out options and recommendations from time to time, but it's ultimately up to you. It's a chance to express yourself however you see fit, so you should never feel shackled or driven to produce something you don't really care about.

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    • 2mo

      @Fathoms77 I wouldn't go so far as to say failed, but community engagement is important. I didn't take into account the outside viewership when writing this.

      I guess, overall, I just haven't enjoyed writing them as much lately. So I wanted to try something a little bit different.

      Thank you for your response.

  • 2mo

    I would love to have it where we can change the title the same as we can edit our mytakes if we dont like something in it. Plus the option to not add photos if we dont want to. Plus it woulsn't hurt to have a way to help cite your sources if you use outside sources.

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    • 2mo

      Use this photo if you don't want to add any photo
      s.graphiq.com/.../White_430113_i0.png
      It would make false impression on admins tho.
      Or you could use a small simple rainbow sheep
      rs831.pbsrc.com/.../210gcvr.gif~c200

    • 2mo

      You do have a way to cite sources; the link option is in the toolbar along with the formatting options (bold, italic, headline, etc). Just highlight the words you wish to use as a hyperlink, hit the link button, and paste the link in.

      Secondly, we can't not have photos or media. Look around the internet and try to find an article that doesn't have one. It simply doesn't work in this day and age; nobody - repeat: NOBODY - is going to read a giant wall of text. As a writer, I find this just as frustrating as anyone (and proves the theory that most people online don't actually READ anything, and it's just one giant moving picture book), but from a digital content standpoint, the reality is that pieces without media are basically a waste of time. Especially for this demographic... and no offense to everyone, but our demographic isn't the same as The Atlantic's. ;)

  • 2mo

    I don't know about answering all those questions, but I like decent sized takes. I like when they're actually about something. So many takes are utterly stupid and pointless. Also, a lot tend to not say much, like: 3 reasons I like poop. Or just devoid of any useful or complete information about a subject. Just be thorough. As for pictures, I hate how they make you have them and there has to be a content to picture ratio, as I recently found out. I'm writing a take, not fuckin art class 😑. I don't mind the styles, but it has to be organized. And for humor, I use a lot of humor in my takes. I like when others do, too. I also hate stats and studies. They always need qualifiers, stipulations and shit. I'm not a fan of manipulative data. Use your own ideas and use graphs and shit wisely. As for vocab, I don't care, just learn how to spell and shit. I do like when they're thought provoking and, like I said, educational and provide useful information

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  • 2mo

    I have had four accounts with about 32 takes but my take style was similar in all.
    (1) Probably long by GaG standards - Intro, 4 to 6 Points/Paragraphs and then conclusion.
    (2) A picture for backdrop then a picture usually with quote to emphasize point of each paragraph
    (3) Bold headings for each point, some Itallics and quote boxes.
    (4) Always an introduction
    (5) Humour, subjective - I did try some, did it work ask readers
    (6) As above in no. 5
    (7) Formatted within an inch of its life - I am a perfectionist
    (8) Depends but usually lots of quotes, links and references
    (9) Very formal, essay or newspaper article format.
    (10) I have a college education and was writing essays for years so that does come through I think.
    (11) Stand Alone with common themes - Trying to find middle ground instead of automatically arguing.
    (12) As with no.7 - Organised to within an inch of its life - Reread a million times before submission - You would be doing really well to find a typo in one of my takes.
    (13) You know answer already - Planned within inch of its life.

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  • 2mo

    "I was going to post another proper MyTake tonight, probably something about social justice or politics or something like that. But just as I was about to write it I thought "what's the point." Sure, the MyTake will probably be promoted (as an editor, it can be demoted, but only if it's really bad, otherwise it's automatically promoted). And it will probably get a few replies. But ultimately it's just another MyTake in a sea of MyTakes. I'm probably tired of whatever I'm writing about so I have to fake enthusiasm. And in the end I'm just looking for something to fill my weekly MyTake quota. And rarely, if ever, am I happy with how the MyTake turns out. And half the time I'm falling asleep when I'm writing it. And the audience response is just as lukewarm. Half of the replies indicate the MyTake wasn't read. I'm not blaming anybody- I don't even have the patience to read through my entire MyTake before posting it."

    -YOOO! I like rebels. GG!! You are revealing the dark side of this site :D

    Anyway,
    Long for professional writing, short for more opinions. G@Gers prefer to read shorter ones. They don't have much time. They are here to farm Xper

    More pictures. Admins/users like beautiful takes. It also gives an (false) impression that the take isn't that long (which is good).

    Just one. Multiple styles cause headache. Use bold characters for only a few words/lines you wanna put emphasis on. Use italic when you are quoting someone or putting something informally.

    "Introduction or no introduction?" In title? No. In the content? Yes!

    Extra humor? Only if you really are humorous. If you can really make a joke, please do. It keeps the readers interested.

    Yes, it should be engaging. Admins love it. It also helps you in building epilogue and culmination of your article.

    Dunno what breaks are.

    Statistics and studies? Well, it depends. It is YOUR take. So, it really isn't necessary. You don't need source, YOU ARE the source. But if you want some help in argument, you may add it.

    Formal or informal? Depends on what you're writing about. Serious topics in formal, personal or random in informal.

    Good vocab.

    Serialized is easier to read, so is Organized.

    Meticulously planned or on the spot? Hmm.. can you give me some examples?

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    • 2mo

      @YourFutureEx I don't think everybody feels that way. I think most people who write MyTakes do it because they enjoy it. That's why I write them. I just haven't enjoyed writing them as much lately.

      SP is an example of "on the spot." Matt and Trey spend six days making each episode. Sometimes the episodes are a jumbled mess, sometimes they are incredible social commentary. On the spot is more impulsive, and that can be a good or bad thing. Family guy is planned out months in advance, and for that reason episodes remain fairly consistent. Consistent format consistent number of jokes, consistent format etc. "On the spot" is more varied and "Meticulously planned" is more consistent in terms of quality.

      By serialized I mean turning the MyTakes into a series. "dating tips 1" "dating tips 2" that sort of thing.

      Do you read the stats and studies?

      Sometimes somebody will write a long paragraph of text. Other times, they will divide it up so there are spaces between the sentences.

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    • 2mo

      Serialized or standalone?
      -Depends upon the length and content. For example, sometimes I have had more than 15 points on a single topic, so I wrote 2-3 takes (or say, in parts). Sometimes I have had a single topic, but with multiple sub topics that are vast, so, I wrote separate myTakes on those sub-topics, but writing about the main topic in the introduction.

      "Do you read the stats and studies?"
      Only a few do. Personally, I do only if the topic is really interesting. But if you add them, you're less likely to get criticised. People will think twice before posting negativity.

      USE BREAKS!!!

      I'd say, 'on the spot' then, because writing on this website is not your profession. There shouldn't be any kind of burden. Do it from free will. Planing should be done only in the cases of profit and loss. And on the spot will enhance your skills, to instantly write on hot topics. Admins and users of this site appreciate the content from "trending topics". This gets you more attention.

    • 2mo

      Introductions ARE good, but they are NOT mandatory. Skip them when necessary. Don't be monotonous, be versatile.

      Give the 'styles' a meaning. Don't use them to decorate your take, use them because you wanted to. Like I mentioned in my opinion "Use bold characters for only a few words/lines you wanna put emphasis on. Use italic when you are quoting someone or putting something informally."

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