Month: October 2011

Lovely example of ‘less is more’ copy from Volkswagen


I know this kind of thing has been done before, but I still think it's great.

It appeals to me as a content writer – it shows just how much copy you often need to cut to make something good.


Istanbul: Topkapi Palace


Topkapi Palace is over-the-top Ottoman opulence – it’s huge, and there’s a room for every possible purpose, including a rather lovely circumcision room with a nice view over the water.

You couldn’t take photos in the treasury, but let me tell you, there was some serious bling in there. Simple girl that I am, the tiling was my favourite bit. I’d quite like to raise an Ottoman from the dead to do my bathroom.

The ‘gilded cage’ photo was a bit of luck; it was describing a genuine gilded cage, but it sums up the place for me, because depsite all the opulence, the rules, segregation and backstabbing must have made it an isolating place to live.

We’re going to need a really great CMS.

Last month after CS Forum I twittered:

Why the f**ck can’t any of us get a CMS that’s fit for purpose?

My own words are coming back to haunt me now, because a new project at work means we’re getting a new CMS.

Our current CMS is capable of quite a lot, but it’s clunky and slow to use. 

Teaching a new member of staff to use it is really, really painful, like a papercut to the eyeball: ‘See that tiny link there? The one that doesn’t look like a link? You need to click that. No, don’t use the scroll bars, that crashes it. Oh, and it only works in IE. And by the way, never update Java or it won’t work.’ Don’t even get me started on the stupid, unhelpful language it uses. (Error! Exception loading children.) I think you’ve got the picture already.

Plus, developers hate it, so when they build something new, it’s not CMS-manageable.

When we sat around talking about the new project, someone said: ‘We’re going to need a really great CMS’ in an optimistic voice. Oh, how I bit my fist to stop myself from laughing bitterly. 

A great CMS is going to be hard to find, like the Holy Grail, a needle in a haystack, the social conscience of a Tory. (Bit of satire for you there.)

However, I have two reasons to be cheerful:

1. I work with really clever people.

2. I’m being asked what I need the CMS to do as a content strategist/editor/writer.

That’s got to be as good a start as any, right?