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Plain2013 Ethics in Communication RWillerton RSaklikar ERains KMcManus

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Ethics in Communication: Understanding situations for plain language use

Russell Willerton, US; Renee Saklikar, Elizabeth Rains and Katherine McManus, Canada

Published in: Education, Technology, Spiritual
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Plain2013 Ethics in Communication RWillerton RSaklikar ERains KMcManus

  1. 1. Ethics in Communication: Understanding Situations for Plain Language Use Russell Willerton Elizabeth Rains Renée Sarojini Saklikar Katherine McManus, Chair
  2. 2. Brief Overview of Ethics • • • • Immanuel Kant’s categorical imperative Utility or utilitarianism Feminist approaches, including care Virtue ethics; see Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics • Martin Buber’s dialogic ethics For another brief overview, see “Why ethics?” by Derek G. Ross at http://www.pelicanweb.org/solisustv08n11page9.html.
  3. 3. The BUROC Model This model identifies opportunities to use plain language for ethical action. Proposed by R. Willerton; modified after comments from 25 PL practitioners worldwide. • • • • B is for bureaucratic. U is for unfamiliar. R-O is for rights-oriented. C is for critical.
  4. 4. The BUROC Model As situation reflects characteristics of the BUROC model more strongly, plain language is likely to benefit people in that situation. The next slides show situations as they reflect one part of the BUROC framework. That said, each of these situations reflects all parts of the framework to some degree.
  5. 5. Bureaucratic: Starting a Non-Profit
  6. 6. Bureaucratic: Starting a Non-Profit CHAPTER 3 IDAHO NONPROFIT CORPORATION ACT 30-3-2. Filing requirements. (1) A document must satisfy the requirements of this section, and of any other section that adds to or varies these requirements, to be entitled to filing by the secretary of state. (2) This act must require or permit filing the document in the office of the secretary of state. (3) The document must contain the information required by this act. It may contain other information as well. (4) The document must be typewritten or printed. (5) The document must be in the English language. However, a corporate name need not be in English if written in English letters or Arabic or Roman numerals, and the certificate of existence required of foreign corporations need not be in English if accompanied by a reasonably authenticated English translation. (6) Except as otherwise permitted by section 30-3-136, Idaho Code, the document must be executed: (a) By the presiding officer of its board of directors of a domestic or foreign corporation, its president, or by another of its officers; (b) If directors have not been selected or the corporation has not been formed, by an incorporator; or (c) If the corporation is in the hands of a receiver, trustee or other court-appointed fiduciary, by that fiduciary. (7) The person executing a document shall sign it and state beneath or opposite the signature his or her name and the capacity in which he or she signs. The document may, but need not, contain: (a) The corporate seal; (b) An attestation by the secretary or an assistant secretary; or (c) An acknowledgement, verification or proof.
  7. 7. Bureaucratic: Starting a Non-Profit Plain language from foundationcenter.org
  8. 8. Unfamiliar: Cell Phone Contract A Device Savings Recovery Fee (DSRF) applies if you have been granted an Economic Inducement (as defined below) upon entering your new term, and if, for any reason, your wireless service or your new term is terminated prior to the end of the term of your Service Agreement (Service Agreement Term). The DSRF is the amount of the economic inducement (which may take the form of a discount, rebate or other benefit granted on the price of your Equipment), as stated in your Service Agreement (Economic Inducement), less the amount obtained by multiplying such months elapsed in your Service Agreement Term as compared to the total number of months of your Service Agreement Term (plus applicable taxes). In other words, DSRF = Economic Inducement – [Economic Inducement x (# months elapsed in your Service Agreement Term ÷ Total # months in your Service Agreement Term)] + applicable taxes.
  9. 9. Unfamiliar: Cell Phone Contract “$450 Bill Credit.”
  10. 10. Rights-Oriented: Referendum in Wichita, KS Shall Charter Ordinance 216 entitled: “A charter ordinance amending and repealing Section 1 of Charter Ordinance No. 213, of the city of Wichita, Kansas, which amended and repealed Section 1 of Charter Ordinance No. 183 of the city of Wichita which amended and repealed Section 1 of Charter Ordinance No. 174 of the city of Wichita, Kansas, pertaining to the application of revenues from the transient guest tax” take effect? (Lefler 2013)
  11. 11. Rights-Oriented: Referendum in Wichita, KS In 2013, the Kansas legislature approved a bill allowing county election officials to request a designated official to write an “explainer” in plain language when the language used in a ballot measure is too confusing for voters. Each explainer will be reviewed for accuracy and neutrality by a second appropriate official (Lefler 2013).
  12. 12. Critical: Do Not Resuscitate Form, Alabama I. I, the undersigned patient, understand that I suffer from a terminal condition, which is an illness or injury for which there is no reasonable prospect of cure or recovery, death is imminent, and the application of resuscitative measures would only prolong the dying process. I hereby direct that prehospital resuscitative measures be withheld from me. I have discussed this decision with my physician, and I understand the consequences of this decision.
  13. 13. Critical: Do Not Resuscitate Form, Alabama II. I, the undersigned, hereby certify that I am related by blood or marriage to the patient named on the reverse side, and that I have personal knowledge that the patient has executed an advance directive (living will), a copy of which is attached, which requires that prehospital resuscitative measures be withheld from the patient under the present circumstances.
  14. 14. Questions 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. What is left out of the BUROC model? Who is the reader, the consumer? What is being consumed? What about history, society, econ. status? What assumptions govern ideas of the plain in language? 6. What about gender, race/ethnicity, culture?
  15. 15. Plain Language for Commissions of Inquiry • Case study, the Inquiry into the Investigation of the bombing of Air India Flight 182 (sometimes called Canada’s 9/11/01) • Sample acronyms used, see “children of air india, un/authorized exhibits and interjections” (Nightwood, 2013) • Overall, though, clear and accessible prose style • Criticism: dissent “smoothed out” R.Saklikar for Plain Language Panel, Oct 2013 15
  16. 16. Air India Inquiry: Acronyms & Disruption Narita : hymnal-acro-nym [name redacted] [name redacted] ACI ACISS ACPA ACS ADO ADR AG AGAS AGBC AGC AI AICCA AICVWS AITF AIVFA AKJ ALAA ALPA AML AML/ATF AML/CFT ACI ACISS ACPA ACS ADO ADR AG AGAS AGBC AGC AI AICCA AICVWS AITF AIVFA AKJ ALAA ALPA AML AML/ATF AML/CFT APEC API/PNR// APO ARAACP ASIO ATA aTAC ATF ATFT ATSC AVSEC BC BK BOAC BPR BSO BSS C// CAC CACPCACPP CAFAS CAIR-CAN CAJ CAPI CASB CATA CATSA CBA CBCR CI CISA CISR C-CAT CCD CCLA CCSI CCTV C Directorate// CEA CEIC CFT CI CIB CIC CIFFA CIO CIP CIS CISBC CI&W CJC CLA AICVWS AITF AIVFA AKJ ALAA ALPA AML AML/ATF AML/CFTAPEC API/PNR// APO ARAACP ASIO ATA aTAC ATF ATFT ATSC AVSEC BC BK BOAC BPR BSO BSS C// CAC CACPCACPP CAFAS CAIRX CTC//CTF DSSO DTP EACSR ECAC EDD EDS EDT EDU E&FE// EFTR EVD FAA FATF FAU FBO FININT FINTRAC // FIU FLQ FLSC FMCMV/IN // GA GOC GOI GTTA HBS HHMD HQ IAB IAC IATA IBET I/C ICAO ICLT ICSI // IED IG IMF IM/IM INSET Insp.or Inspt. IO IPOC IR IRPA I&S ISO ISYF IT ITA ITAC IVTS JFO JIC JMT LC LCTR LO LTTE MANPAD MATRA MI5 MILF ML MLAT // MOA MOT MOU RAIC RAP RAW // RAIC RAP RAW // RCMP RCMP SS RFID RIUNSTR // SAC SDS SeMS Sgt. SIGINT SIRC SIT SLO SOP SOS SPL SPOT SPP SPROS SQ SR SRAS SS SSCMS SSEA S/Sgt SSO STR STS TA TAPP TARC TAU TC TF TFU TIPS NTX TPR TSA TSC TWA U/F UK U/M UNAQTR UN CTC // UNSTR US USAP USSS VDS VIA VIIU VIP VIR VPD VSI WAC&R WPP WPPA WRC WSO WTM WTMD XRTInsp.or Inspt. IO IPOC IR IRPA I&S ISO ISF IT ITA ITAC IVTS JFO JIC JMT LC LCTR LO LTTE MANPAD MATRA MI5 MILF ML MLAT // MOA MOT MOU MSB NAPSP NC NCCT NCIB NCIS // NCO NPO P Directorate SIRC SIT SLO SOP SOS SPL SPOT SPP SPROS SQ SR SRAS SS SSCMS SSEA S/Sgt SSO STR STS TA TAPP TARC TAU TC TF TFU TIPS NTX TPR TSA TSC TWA U/F UK U/M UNAQTR UN WTMD XRT APEC API/PNR// APO ARAACP ASIO ATA aTAC ATF ATFT ATSC AVSEC BC BK BOAC BPR BSO BSS C// CI&W CJC CLA CLEU CMCLA CO CO CP or CP Air CP CPC CPIC CRA CRCVC CRSIA CS CSC CSE CSEC CSIS C/Supt. CT CT or CAT, CT-X CTC//CTF DDG, ops DDR DEA DFAIT DG DHA DIO DND DNI DOJ DOT DPP DSSO DTP EACSR ECAC EDD EDS EDT EDU E&FE// EFTR EVD FAA FATF FAU FBO FININT FINTRAC // FIU FLQ FLSC FMCMV/IN // GA GOC GOI GTTA HBS HHMD HQ IAB IAC IATA IBET I/C ICAO ICLT ICSI // IED IG IMF IM/IM INSET Insp.or Inspt. IO IPOC IR IRPA I&S ISO ISYF IT ITA ITAC IVTS JFO JIC JMT LC LCTR LO LTTE MANPAD MATRA MI5 MILF ML MLAT // MOA MOT MOU MSB NAPSP NC NCCT NCIB NCIS // NCO NPO NPRM NPS NSA NSCNSCIS NSE NSID NSIS NSOB NSOS NSOTF NSR NSTAS NSY SB OAS OAS OCP IOC OP OPC OPP ops OSA OSCE OSFI // PBS PC PCMLTFA // PCO P Directorate PEP PFLP PHRO PIA // PIRS PMO POC PPP PRPF PS or PSC PSD PSEPC PSU PTV QPF RAD // RAIC RAP RAW // RAIC RAP RAW // RCMP RCMP SS RFID RIUNSTR // SAC SDS SeMS Sgt. SIGINT SIRC SIT SLO SOP SOS SPL SPOT SPP SPROS SQ SR SRAS SS SSCMS SSEA S/Sgt SSO STR STS TA TAPP TARC TAU TC TF TFU TIPS NTX TPR TSA TSC TWA U/F UK U/M UNAQTR UN CTC // UNSTR US USAP USSS VDS VIA VIIU VIP VIR VPD VSI WAC&R WPP WPPA WRC WSO WTM WTMD XRT R.Saklikar for Plain Language Panel, Oct 2013 16
  17. 17. Suggestion When using the BUROC model, consider this mantra: • “Nothing about us without us” (motto used by indigenous peoples and oppressed, marginalized groups)

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