Do NOT Kill the Audience

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Repeat after me: Do NOT kill the audience...with crammed PowerPoint slideshows that inspire boredom and ADD. McMillan's video on YouTube presents a perfect example of how not to use PowerPoint, or use it if you want to fail a grade or put your audience to sleep. (For those of you who may not know, putting the audience to sleep is the same as killing them.)

However, McMillan's video also directly relates to the transition from oral speech to writing, and later into the digital age. McMillan argues that a presenter needs to have part of his/her speech memorized to not crowd information on slides. This is a skill that was extremely important in oral communication, because everyone used their memory as a storage facility without having to clear out random bits of song first. Writing is shown on the slides of the presentation for the audience to read and (hopefully) better understand what is being presented. So now we've tied in the first two phases of human communication, the third is probably the most obvious: digital computer graphics and communication = the Digital Age! Essentially by using the PowerPoint program in the first place, a presenter is utilizing the most latest form of communication, though I would argue that heavily using it would still kill your audience. It's best to synthesize each of these forms of discourse in order to best capture an audience. Then again, I would also say that you need to have a steadier stand on the oral bit, because that is what will ultimately call attention to all that you have previously written on carefully crafted slides. Plato's Socrates may have argued against the writing things down, but simply try to think that after you hook an audience with your voice, they'll be distracted by the absolutely amazing PowerPoint presentation that you put together!

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This page contains a single entry by MadelynGillespie published on February 10, 2010 12:07 PM.

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