The BBC website follows the style of many newspapers that places only one, sometimes two, sentences in each paragraph.

The theory is that people will continue to read an article containing lots of white space.

A big block of print is scary, and many readers move on when they see it coming.

Print surrounded with white space is inviting.

But I find it harder to understand.

The reader is left on their own to figure out which thoughts are connected, thoughts that would normally be developed in a paragraph.

At the other extreme, I have seen short stories in The New Yorker magazine that are all one giant paragraph.  Same problem for the reader.

See, you are still reading this, aren’t you?  And this is only a slight exaggeration of the current style.  Check your own newspaper.  (Oops, I just broke the rule.  Many of you are now gone.)

Reminds me of a butterfly flitting from thought to thought.

Are you sorry you started?  Me, too, when I read something like this.

About Roger Walck

My reasons for writing this blog are spelled out in the posting of 10/1/2012, Montaigne's Essays. They are probably not what you think.
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