Actively involved in both the worlds of advertising and literature, I’ve noticed a distinct trend in both toward simplicity and clarity. In advertising, it’s necessary. In literature and the arts, I have quite another opinion.
As producers of content make that content easier and easier to consume, the standards for complexity shift. Consumers grow so used to the simplest-terms pablum that is shoveled out that their capacity for digesting ideas with more complex subtleties becomes more and more limited.
Advertising by the nature of its goals must be simple, I get that. If you can’t arrest your audience immediately with a clear (and engaging) message, then the advertisement becomes superfluous.
But let not our arts follow suit. I truly believe we underestimate people. If we can produce more content that challenges and intrigues with deeper thinking and more involved interactions – and less, much less of the drivel – then people will rise to the occasion. And we will all be the better for it.