“Uncreative Writing: Redefining Language and Authorship in the Digital Age”
What is creativity? Well according to Dictionary.com, it is “the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.” Straight from the meaning of the word itself, creativity is based upon uncreative ideas in order to transcend into innovative or thought-provoking ones. What does that mean? Well to me, it means that no idea is original and that anything that is labeled as creative obviously had inspirations or influences from elsewhere. But, usually when we determine how creative something or someone can be, we tend to ignore those specifics and hold such high standards when determining “originality”. Now I’m not saying you should not aim to be as different as possible when conjuring up ideas as your mind can hold an infinite amount of thoughts that can ultimately be limitless. What I am saying is that through the thousands of years of humanity and billions of lives that have been here before us, those many ideas have already been published and shared throughout the world in one form or another. So obviously because of these factors that we just happened to have been born after, there needs to be a new look on exactly how creativity is assessed. Think of it more like the evolution of creativity, while always trying to focus on “new” thoughts and ideas, there should also be large focus on altering or innovating “old” thoughts and ideas. Finding new ways to go about old things can be just as creative as inventing a new idea. Creative minds definitely help shape the world and can be accounted for much of the progression of humanity. Like stated before, “new” ideas or creations aren’t the only significant contributions to society as many alterations to already-exisiting concepts have also helped positively affect society. Just look around you, how many of the items in your reach can be seen as having influence by other items you either own or can think of in your mind. Learning from the past and gaining new perspective from other views is needed in order to fully understand what exactly you are trying to accomplish or grasp and is key in being creative as you look for new ways or methods in reaching your goal.
“Don’t Be Fooled – Use the SMELL Test”
The SMELL test as explained by John McManus is a great way to filter and search for more accuracy regarding your topic. The five core elements it consists of, which are Source, Motivation, Evidence, Logic, and Left Out, are key details many people tend to leave out when using a search engine to seek information. The internet, for as well as it is a huge gateway for knowledge, it can also be housing for a tremendous amount of junk and a lot of that junk can be found through simple Google searches. The World Wide Web should really be renamed to something with a grander spectrum of size such as the “Universal Wide Web” because of it is ever growing feature and just like in our actual universe, there’s a lot of clutter. So it is only helpful to be able to effectively sort through all that clutter in order to achieve your goal. As far as the breakdown goes, Source is understanding who is actually distributing the information you are obtaining. What actual credentials do they have for regarding the topic? Motivation helps trying to understand why exactly do they want to give out information about the specific topic or what kind of benefit would they obtain by putting in the work for actually sharing the knowledge with you. Evidence is simply just going through the sources of all the substantial information and verifying the actual truth behind it. Logic is essentially putting all the pieces together. Do all the facts they provided you add up with how they achieved the information and does their credibility actually seem to be able to reach such claims? Last but not least, Left Out makes you ponder what else have you learned about the specific topic from elsewhere that might or might not fit into what the current provider is detailing. Integrating all these aspects into the way you search for information online will only increase the amount of accuracy in your returns and help you better determine right from wrong.