Jargon, it’s the technical language that fills things like scientific papers, and manuals. It can be headache inducing without the proper knowledge or preparation. I am a strong believer in the idea of avoiding jargon if possible. However, jargon has a place in writing. When should you use jargon?

The situations in which I argue that jargon should be used are actually quite straightforward. Jargon is ideal for 2 situations.

  1. Writing to a specific audience: If you know that your audience will understand your jargon, there are cases where there is no need to explain a concept as if a member of the general public was reading your work. If I was writing something to an audience of people that understand grammar to a technical level, I could use words that an electrician might not know.
  2. No other option: Particularly in the sciences (and medicine), sometimes the only language available to you is ultra-specified. There are names of certain chemicals, diseases, and medications that don’t have non-scientific names. In some cases, jargon is the only option.

I firmly believe in the idea of avoiding jargon if possible and will write more about it in the future. However, there are situations in which jargon is the ideal option for communication.

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