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Plain English - Write A Letter Of Support + Nominate For The Awards

Speaking and writing "plain English" is such a fundamental to open information that the idea of having to promote it seems plain weird! But heh, not all policy analysts, business analysts or internal communication advisers agree with me and the desire o use 20 business wanky words when 1 or 2 plain English words will do seems insatiable.

Not that I am advocating the dumbing down on English, if there is a word that fits, use it and then people can use Google ("other search engines are available") to find out what it means - always good to be educated.

But, we obviously do need to advocate for plain English as tweet examples/outbursts from my immediate circle constantly highlight :-) And advocating has never been so easy - write a letter/email and nominate best use of English - voila, done, sorted, in the bag :-)

1: Write A Letter In Support of Plain English Power

This from Rachel of Plain English Power:
Update on our lobbying efforts
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On 18 June four of us will sit down with the Minister of State Services, Tony Ryall, and put our case for plain language in government communications. We're delighted
he has agreed to meet with us. We will ask him to champion the Plain Language Act 2009 within Cabinet and steer it through the legislation process.

This is Step One of Plan A. We'll keep you posted with progress.

How you can help us right now
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At this stage we would appreciate letters of support, especially from organisations—but also from you personally, as an individual.

Many thanks to those who have already written to us!

Whatever you have to say is extremely valuable. You see, our credibility depends entirely on support from organisations and individuals. Collectively we are strong.

So please do take the time to send in a few words, either by email or on paper. If you speak for an organisation, please use your organisation's letterhead. Members of
Parliament need to know what you're thinking about the benefits of plain English.

Your letters will make a difference. We will pass them on to the Minister on 18 June.

Please send a letter of support to:
The Chairperson
Plain English Power
PO Box 19184
Wellington 6149


Warmest thanks for your support so far.

Rachel McAlpine
Chairperson, Plain English Power

2: 2009 WriteMark New Zealand Plain English Awards

Pop over to and nominate your entries and be in to win an award presented on 18th September 2009 at the Museum Building, Wellington:

Category 1: Plain English Champion
  • Best Organisation
  • Best Project
  • Best Individual or Team
Category 2: Best Plain English Document
  • Public Sector / Non-Government Organisation (NGO)
  • Private Sector
Category 3: Best Plain English Website
  • Public Sector / Non-Government Organisation (NGO)
  • Private Sector
Category 4: Best Sentence Transformation (the easiest one to enter!)

Category 5: People’s Choice
  • Best Plain English Document
  • Best Plain English Website
  • ‘Brainstrain’ Document
  • ‘Brainstrain’ Website