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Speaking the Language, a New World of Spreading the Word(s)

This month I wrote an article for the very good trade journal called Printwear. I’ve done that for many many years, through a host of good editors starting with Mark Buchanan right through my pal Emily Thompson and to the current talented Carly Hollman-Long.

When you go to China, you can just speak English and if talking to you is valuable enough, some folks will figure out how to speak English to you. If you really want to reach people, you will learn to communicate by the primary Chinese languages and maybe even a dialect or two. Only 20% of Chinese folks know any English. If you are really set on communicating there, you have four main written languages not mention all the other less known languages,  and there are dozens upon dozens of spoken languages from Äynu to Tsat (you can look those up…)

Okay, where am I going with this? Reaching screenprinters is like going to China now (bad analogy, I know…) You can’t just print a trade journal article now and figure that everyone will read it. Those days are gone, gone, gone. Does that mean abandon the trade journal format? Definitely not.

However, that’s why Tom and I do the Ink Kitchen and that’s why our media guru Pam Ikegami is what Richard Greaves called “our secret weapon.” Y’all are busy and you might only get to check your phone and check out a couple tweets at a stop light or on the bus or on the can or whatever. You might not have time to read but you might listen to a podcast during your painful commute or while you are up late printing that order for tomorrow. If you are too tired to read a few thousand words, you might check out a few instagram photos. We know that many of you look at, some every day, some occasionally, some looking stuff up just when you need to know something very specific.

It is a brave new world out there and information will find you if you don’t find it.

If I didn’t see you here, maybe I’ll see you on the Facebook (hey, it was originally called that…) or in person at the Nashville ISS show or wherever we have to go to meet you half way.

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