Intranet Idol: an idea that will transform intranets

Dmitri Prigov, Russian poet
'Five ideas that will transform intranets' (aka 'Intranet Idol') was a high spot at Intranets 2012. In a misguided moment, I decided to sing my contribution. Here are lyrics, which, at the time, went right out my head—which was better than remembering them.

First in a wee spiel I said something like this:

In the coming intranet utopia, everyone who writes for an intranet will understand the WCAG 2.0 guidelines for writing accessible content. They will use Word and their CMS correctly. They will not need to be policed, because they will understand the fundamental principles of accessibility and eagerly comply for logical and altruistic reasons. And the hard-pressed intranet teams, now in despair about all the broken content that crosses their desks, will be happy too.

The far-from-deathless lyrics of my song follow.

Oh, the poet and policeman should be friends.
Yes, the poet and policeman should be friends.
She wanders lonely as a cloud.
He says, 'Tables not allowed!'
But that's no reason why they can't be friends.

Intranet folk should stick together,
Intranet folk should all be friends.
Then the ones who used to break it
Will know how to make amends.

I'd like to say a word for the writers.
They have to use a funny CMS.
They all use Yammer but they don't know grammar
Or how to make a decent PDF.

I'd like to say another word for the writers.
They could do half your WCAG work for you.
They should do Heading 1 and 2 and ALT-text—
But no-one ever showed them what to do!

Oh, the writer and the web team should be friends.
Yes, the writer and the web team should be friends.
This one likes to spew out words.
That one says, 'Can they be heard?'
But that's no reason why they should be friends.

Intranet folk should stick together,
Intranet folk should all be friends.
Then the ones who used to break it
Will know how to make amends.

Tragically, I did not win Intranet Idol. Martin White gave a splendid riff on why information architecture should be banished to the pits of hell to make way for the Angel of Search. Mere mortals didn't stand a chance.

Photo: Dmitri Prigov, Russian poet, CC www.opendemocracy.net

 


Rachel McAlpine
Rachel McAlpine

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