Literate and Semi-Literate

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Ray, Dec 6, 2014.

  1. I can't stress this enough... Great pairing ideas, great plot ideas, and great plot bunnies BUUUT. There's just one problem. I have to be "literate" or "semi-literate" to qualify for expectations. No specifics, just the idea of a person wanting "literate" or "semi-literate" players. That brings me down. That makes me begin to question whether I'm good enough to roleplay with those people. They consider themselves "literate" so they want partners who are "literate" in order to even out the writing styles that are either "literate" or "semi-literate" writing. I can't explain how much this upsets me... What exactly are you looking for? Am I good enough for you? Can I roleplay with you or am I not "literate" enough in order to suit your tastes? :(
     
  2. We have roleplayer resumes for a good reason here. If someone is asking 'Literate' or 'Semi-literate', the response should be 'So is that intermediate, adept, or... What?'

    If they aren't being specific enough that you're left questioning whether you should even apply before questioning which plot you want to try, you're better off not worrying about it.

    It's a lazy catch-all term that, honestly, I have no fucking clue where it came from. It's dumb. We have a much better rubric to use here. Literate usually just means you're able to read and write. So, by the textbook definition, you qualify.
     
  3. Well, good thing you found Iwaku then. The prevailing sentiment here is that using "literate" in that way is awful and stupid and should never be done. @Diana, one of the site admins, has a nice little blog post linked in her signature in which she explains why it's stupid and elitist.

    That aside, yeah, I hate it too. I really hate it when people try to use it to mean "really good writer." The common meaning of literate is that they're capable of reading and writing the language, not that they can do it well. If they want a term to weed out people who aren't very good with the language then they should go with something like fluent, or blunt messages of "I'm looking for really skilled writers who make little to no grammatical mistakes" to make it clear. Someone with an average ten year old child's reading/writing level is literate, so it's really just a stupid term to use because it doesn't mean what they want it to mean.
     
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  4. What Jorick said about Diana's blog post that sums up how I feel about the matter rather nicely (I responded to that post, if you really care for my opinions on the matter), but basically if you're capable of reading and writing, you're literate, period. Using it as a short-hand to say your expectations is kind of lazy and dickish, to be blunt. If you want someone capable of writing 3-4 paragraphs of proof-read and descriptive posts, come out and say it. What one person might interpret as literate can mean something else to another person entirely.

    If you're interested in an idea, ask them to highlight exactly what their expectations of a partner are, and if you don't feel you're at the comfort or skill level that player expects, don't feel discouraged! There's a range of players on this site that almost certainly fit any given person's expectations and criteria (well, unless they're incredibly anal and a perfectionist, but alas, those are the exception rather than the rule). Just because your writing may or may not be at somebody else's level doesn't mean you aren't as good as them, we just all have different strengths and expectations. It's like how I'm much better at stuff revolving around literary subjects and history than my friend is, but he basically makes me look like a caveman when it comes to the ability to do math.

    Roleplay the level you're comfortable with and only push yourself to write better if you really feel motivated to; I've had players tell me I'm the reason they pushed themselves to become better writers, and that's a HUGE compliment that I take to heart, but I never forced them to. Ultimately, if you meet someone's written expectations, then that's all you should worry about unless you want to do more. The roleplaying world is your oyster and you have all the choice in the world here!
     
  5. @Dervish Thanks for the encouragement. I really appreciate it! ;w;
     
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  6. I would write with you if you ever wanted to.
     
  7. @Ragnar Lothbrok Oh my god yes! I'd love to write with you! I looked over your roleplay resume already trololol and found that we have some of the same interests! Please sooth my wounded heart! *dramatic Shakesphere moment*
     
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  8. Haha, great, I have to step out for the moment but I should be back shortly. We can start brainstorming in a PM.
     
  9. Awesome! ouo
     
  10. You are very welcome! We're all in this together.

    BTW, I love that show, although I can't watch that Blood Eagle episode without Amon Amarth blasting somewhere in the back of my mind.
     
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  11. I tend to sway on the side of 'literate' or at least wordy, but I don't give flak to my rp buddies or partners if they don't. Definitely not going to force anyone, but would be nice if they made the same effort, or at least made an effort - because I'm doing it for them in the first place. There's someone I'm rp-ing with off-site that I'm a bit peeved with - he has good grammar and all that, he can write out scenes pretty well when he wants to, but well... There are times when I just feel :blah: when for every paragraph (I keep a minimum of two usually) I try to be descriptive, he just writes out at max three sentences.

    But in the end, he's still a good roleplayer to collaborate with. He thinks up good twists, his characters are interesting, he's able to make them so despite not being wordy. And I learned to adapt to what my partners or co-players write if I have to. I can't remain rigid in my own stances if I want everyone to enjoy themselves.

    That aside, why do they use the words 'literate' and 'semi-literate' anyway?
     
    #11 Hana, Dec 11, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2014
  12. The heck does 'semi-literate' even mean, anyway? You can only use and understand proper grammar and good spelling on tuesdays and fridays?
     
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  13. "Did I mention I am semi-literate today?"
     
  14. In elitist roleplayer world, it probably equates to... Let's say their version of "literate" is equal to Douche and Prestige writing levels from the Iwaku system. I figure "semi-literate" would then be equal to Advanced and Adept, but never any lower because the lower brackets are of course pleb tier garbage. Just a continuation of their nonsense, basically.

    In the real world, semi-literate could be something along the lines of knowing enough of a language to get by in everyday life stuff, like knowing the words for money and time and being able to ask where things are and order food, but not much else. You could be semi-literate in a language if you took high school classes to learn it and never went further, because you would know the basics but you'd be useless if someone tried to talk to you about the intricacies of religion or politics or so on in that language.
     
  15. How did they start throwing around these terms, anyway? I haven't heard of these at all until I joined here.
     
  16. They probably saw the secondary definitions of the word literate, stuff like "versed in literature or creative writing : literary" from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary, or "
    having or showing knowledge of literature, writing, etc.; literary; well-read." from dictionary.com, and decided to twist it into a writing skill thing. Or maybe in the grand tradition of pretentious twats everywhere they went to the thesaurus to find a fancier term for words like "educated" and found literate that way.

    Whatever the actual source, I've only seen it used in pretty awful places. Never saw the word employed in such a fashion on the couple roleplaying forums I used for more than a day, but I saw it thrown around a lot on one that seemed to be made up primarily of shitty Naruto fandom roleplays. :rotfl:
     
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  17. The only time I've seen the word 'literate' is when it's used to mean 'can read and write', basically what you said earlier. Lol I've never heard of such a thing as 'semi-literate' until recently, but I'm glad I never encountered or treated anyone like that. When I rp I try to post the best I could for the people I roleplay with, and if they want to improve their writing it is up to them. I still have a lot to learn myself and going on Iwaku lets me see a lot of people I could learn from, it's great. :bouncy: I've never been so glad to start branching out or trying new things.

    It's great to discover new things everyday.

    Back to the what I was saying before: I consider it a compliment when people tell me it motivates them to write better, and I appreciate that they also made an effort in turn, but I would never force them. That's the way of losing potential good partners or buddies in rp. What is important is that everyone is having fun and not feeling left-out.

    I also adapt my writing if I feel like I'm writing too much for what is a casual or playful rp. ^^