Typographic Animation: Think About It

Take a moment and think about it.

How often do you catch yourself saying “like” or ending what should be a firm declaration with “ya know?” or “right?” What has happened to our conviction? I know that I was challenged by this video to attempt to go through a day without saying “like.” It encouraged me to firmly say what I had to say, without always worrying I wouldn’t fit in.

Even in classes, I often feel sorry for the professor standing at the front of the room. Students don’t want to speak, don’t want to engage in their education. They don’t want to “be wrong” in front of the class or appear to be a “teacher’s pet.” How old are we, again? It’s time to take action.

If you don’t understand something, own it. Silence is not the answer.

As human beings, we want acceptance, we want approval. But especially as we grow older, we should concern ourselves less with what others think about us. Some things need to be said, not implied.

So take the challenge presented: don’t simply question authority. Speak with it.

Or, in classrooms, speak to it.


About rynintherealworld

My name is Eryn. I enjoy music and art and literature. Life is a gift we are given, and it's our responsibility to use it. That means getting our hands dirty; reaching out, digging in, or even just opening the door. If I had a mission statement it would be this: Spread love like it's a disease.
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97 Responses to Typographic Animation: Think About It

  1. rubiescorner says:

    I agree. As I age, I find myself more forthright and standing up for what I know is true. I am more open, less closed with children. I try to motivate and have fun while teaching.

  2. Matt says:

    Great post. Quite amazing that English is considered one of the hardest languages to learn but we as native English speakers will “like” continue to find new ways to speak the language in such a lazy way. ‘


  3. partialview says:

    Great going, Eryn! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed.
    And yes, it is absolutely imperative we shrug off the insecurities and act like we own our thoughts.

  4. bluecloverbelle says:

    I love this, it has really made me think! It is true that we say so many things which we don’t need to say, and that we always talk with a lack of authority.

  5. runtobefit says:

    I love this!!! The video is great. So true!! I am definitely going to speak with conviction from now on!!!


  6. Great post + great video))). Thanks for sharing.


  7. Amanda says:


    Great poem that goes really well with this topic.

  8. I LOVE this. I do a lot of typography work myself and never thought of it. Although I do put words over old vintage films I found. Great post! Love it.

  9. I am ever-so glad that you posted this. It is so crazy how much we, as people, have turned our own beliefs into a new way to please people. So much so, that our beliefs no longer are what we believe; this really makes you think. (:

  10. Sarah says:

    I agree, we’re always trying to (consciously or not) be accepted and “speaking up” would mean you’re (1) showing off, or (2) not smart.

    Kudos on being on FP! πŸ™‚

  11. Amen. That’s so true. I’m so tired of the lack of assertiveness in teens now days. (That’s kind of funny because I’m still a teen) I’m going to spread this around.

  12. Pingback: Typographic Animation: Think About It (via Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow) « The Love of Words

  13. I love this post. (<—-declarative statement)

  14. PseudoChris says:

    I LOVE Taylor Mali… I’ve been tracking his poetry since high school.
    As a writer I also appreciate the little nuances of Typography.

    I made a post about other Typographic Animation (in a less serious tone πŸ™‚

  15. sayanti says:

    Good observation! The whole perspective needs a shower.
    You can visit http://www.rippedconformity.wordpress.com

  16. Pingback: Know what I’m like saying? « Christopher Lisle

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  18. dearexgirlfriend says:

    i like your post. alot. get the ironical part of my comment? so clever i am.

  19. Evie Garone says:

    You are so right, how about people who end ever sentence in a question….I hate that! Or the inflection of the sentence goes up as if it’s a question, you are right DECLARE what you believe in & stand behind it!


  20. That video by Taylor was fun Eryn…thanks for bringing it to some many people’s attention.



  21. cenersys says:

    Absolutely happening in conversations, like, all around us, ya know? Me and ma friends have been spending some nice time joking about the speech tone, like, one you just brought into notice.

    So you know, it all boils down to what words we should choose in speaking during a conversation, like, appropriate words I mean.

    Thanks for the nice post.
    PS. Some believe that the purpose of language is to make people understand, but I believe yeah, language IS for understanding, but making someone understand your point with more impact in the listener’s mind – that’s the challenge.

  22. Paula Bailey says:

    I completely agree. And your point about the classroom is particularly significant. I am studying at the moment and I am one of only three in a group of twenty who will speak in group discussions without being asked to directly. After a while you begin to tire of your own voice and start to think that everyone else wishes you would just shut up – but it is unbearable when a question is thrown open and there is silence. I feel it is unfair on the group – we should share and be prepared to be disagreed with.

    Having said that, some of our tutors don’t use ‘you know?’ and the like as a suffix but, in a very similar vein, use ‘sort of’ as a prefix – which diminishes the message. It’s about confidence of course, but we should remember that we are not at school any more.

  23. Breenroundtheworld says:

    great. thank you

  24. That was BRILLIANT, thank you so much for posting it. I wanted to pick out the parts of it I best agreed with but couldn’t: it is all very true, and a worrying reflection of how anxious we seem to have become about our own opinions and ideas.

    As it happens I mentioned similar thoughts in a blog entry yesterday, saying that I feel I am part of “the anxious generation of over-achieving teenage girls who have been taught by the β€˜new morals’ to dim themselves down to achieve equality.”

    At school our teachers pull us up if we say ‘like’ or end statements with invisible question marks. If we answer a question with “Is it xyz?” they stop us and tell us to answer questions with answers, not more questions.

    Thank you again for posting: this is one of the best things I’ve come across this week. (Having said that, I did find the canned laughter very irritating.)

    • I am glad to have your feedback, it is of utmost importance that our generation faces this problem of communication. In order to be a force of influence on our world, we need to be able to stand up for ourselves and our ideas.

      Thanks for responding, it’s for people like you that I posted this πŸ™‚

  25. Pingback: Typographic Animation: Think About It (via Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow) « Vita in Verbis

  26. Michelle says:

    I appreciate your post. At 27, I’ve finally realized it’s ok to say no and do what you want, even if your actions might be socially frowned upon. It’s such a release to live life for yourself, and not the people around you.

  27. is ronnie bruce a comedian? i feel like i’ve heard/seen that bit before, but i don’t remember where. i love it, though. i LOVE it.

    • Ronnie Bruce is actually the man behind the typography, it is Taylor Mali who created the content. Sorry, I guess I should have been more explicit in those behind the video! But thanks for your response!

  28. great post, the video was awesome

  29. Frankly, I find your post hard to understand and partially inconsistent. However, IMO:

    1. Conviction need not be a good thing. Indeed, those who have a strong conviction are often wrong…

    2. We should speak our mind and not hide opinions for fear of looking foolish or of being non-conforming. At the same time, we should have the intellectual honesty to realize that we could be wrong and the other party right.

    3. Questioning authority is better than just speaking with it—and questioning is the farther going action.

    • Thanks for the comment, Michael!
      You do raise an excellent counter-argument. However, I find conviction to be better than uncertainty. I have always stood by the idea that if you don’t stand for something you may fall for anything. Speaking out and with authority does not always mean being pigheaded and closed minded. What is the problem with believing in something? I’d much rather be known as opinionated than wishy-washy.
      If we don’t believe that what we say matters or counts for anything, how can we question authority?

  30. popscure says:

    like right on, you know?

  31. PabloS says:

    The video was really funny but immediately understood what his point was. It described what I clearly hear everyday of the week and what I say in awkward conversations. Enjoyed the post and keep it up. I am now going to attempt to take this challenge as well.

  32. Brilliant!!!! Mesmerizing!!!! I loved it!!!!
    Now that you know how I felt, here a re a few words regarding what it meant.
    It is about time we took our language back in all its full and beautiful richness and artful intent.
    Thank you for sharing this with us today.

  33. milieus says:

    This is great. Really puts it out there for everyone to see/ hear.

  34. Ado Bajic says:

    It isn’t only speaking up, speaking with conviction, speaking without the meaningless interruptions, such as ….erm, like, you know…we have become an inarticulate generation…great choice of video, and a good post…and thanks for the idea…

    And, yes, congrats on making it to the freshly pressed!

  35. Hahaha, it’s so true right? Like, whenever I try to talk with people they’re always saying like so much I like to disbelieve it.

  36. Very true about people not wanting to speak up! In classes, I always felt bad for the teacher, so would speak up in those ‘dead silence’ moments. Now that I both teach and study, I really appreciate students that are willing to have a go, even if they’re not quite on the mark.

  37. Hola/ Hi, from Buenos Aires. I take the tipographic animation for my art blog and give to you the credit. Abrazo and meke more posts. Rodrigo

  38. Sarah says:

    I like the animation in the video. And it has a great message as well… a little troubling actually. Made me realize I sometimes write just like I talk. Yikes! that’s a little scary.

    Thanks for the post,

  39. Typographic animations are really amazing: in one of my college classes, a student showed one of a scene from the movie Fight Club, but it was just the words presented in a similar way to how the video you shared was structured. It’s really crazy, because something written out and emphasized via text in that way starts to take on a completely different meaning than it being just said out loud. If you’re interested in being challenged, try transcribing conversations: sometimes when I’m in class and people around me are just chatting, I’ll just start type type typing away until I have their whole conversation – which is often riddled with ‘likes’ and ‘uhs’ – down in a document. It ends up looking so silly, this well punctuated documentation of something really frivolous. Definitely something that warrants further investigation, especially by someone like you who already seems to have fantastic insight!

  40. tenthoubride says:

    This is brilliant..thanks for sharing (and congrats on being freshly pressed).

  41. lostdmw says:

    Awesome video, thanks for sharing!

  42. Teri says:

    I love your mission statement.

  43. ianyce says:

    .,i’ll try not to use the words “like, ya know and right” but it’s kinda hard really coz i kinda used to it he he he he, especially in class where all the other students are expecting you to raise the right answer to a particular question. πŸ™‚

  44. Pingback: Typographic Animation: Think About It (via Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow) | Badmammy's Blues

  45. x1123581321x says:

    it’s, like brilliant. Well crafted words, you know what I am saying?
    But the bottom line it’s nothing like the bitching lyrics of the B.E.P Songwriters Adams William — Ferguson Stacy and Gomez, Jaime. Their word are like, deep, if you know what I mean…? Yo, I got that hit that beat the block You can get that bass overload
    I got the that rock and roll That future flow That digital spit Next level visual shit
    I got that boom boom pow How the beat bang, boom boom pow..

    Now this is poetry!

  46. buttonstuff says:

    Fantastic! I have long lamented the injection of ‘like’, ‘you know’, etc into contemporary venacular. As a former high school teacher, Australian kids (now in their 20’s) have developed a bizarre and incredibly annoying lackadaisical, pseudo accent. Every statement is a question at the same time and every statement is delivered in such a way that they are making a revelation to rock the world.

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  48. Lynaya says:

    I was just recently talking about this. I know a guy who actually does ask questions, but he does it in such an apologetic way. He doesn’t make eye contact and he talks in a funny voice so that it makes people laugh. Usually he gets to have his cake and eat it too. He asks the qustion and everyone thinks he’s funny, but it still has always stood out to me how he seems sorry to have to ask. I’ll definately try to ask and say things with more confidence. This is very interesting.

  49. Pingback: Typographic Animation: Think About It (via Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow) « Thewondermya's Blog

  50. TOC says:

    Even though there are credits at the end of this OUTSTANDING clip, it might be nice/cool to mention the performer & animator somewhere in your post too. Just sayin’

  51. We have to feel secure about ourselves. It is hard not to care what other people think about us. We are judged by how much money we make, what our job title is at work, and what neighborhood we live in. We are constantly being bombarded with other people’s thoughts. We get trained to care about what people think. We become addicted to the necessity for other people’s approval. We have to reprogram ourselves to not need these approvals from others. That is an easy thing to say but harder to do.


  52. Christopher says:

    Wow, thanks for introducing me to Taylor Mali who actually wrote/performed the video shown above. Is he awesome or what? errm … don’t hurt me if I say he’s good, okay? πŸ˜‰

    Just been watching a heap of his other videos on YouTube, glad to see his annoyance at people who think teachers are worthless! πŸ™‚

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  54. vaidehi patil says:

    lovely post.

  55. Divya says:

    Boy is this embarassing?? I use those words almost all the time!

  56. zookyshirts says:

    Great video and thought behind it. The typographic animation is a really creative way to visually portray a speech. As for the verbal crutches, I’m guilty of saying “like” and “you know?” and “okay?” way too often than they need to be. I try to catch myself, though, and lessen the amount of them. I think speaking is much more articulate without those needless words gunking it up. Thanks for sharing the video and the message!

  57. BHavEEka says:

    When I was in school and colleges, I never asked questions, never pointed out the spelling error on the board made teachers, I was simply not daring I guess….Once I spoke I got all red and what not, my face could tell my nervousness…
    But at the end in my third year of Bachelors, I pulled my hands up and asked questions, once that was done, it was easy for me to ask questions in front of crowd!
    This article so reminded me of old days. Thank you!

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  59. richannkur says:

    Nice video… Thanks for sharing.

  60. pjsteve says:

    I really enjoyed listening to that. It Definitely gave me something to think about. Thank you for posting it.

  61. Pingback: Typographic Animation: Think About It (via Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow) « brain&heart

  62. El Quebin says:

    This is a laudable sentiment. I recall reading somewhere recently that most US presidential speeches are written at a 6th grade level or thereabouts – not because the speakers feel a need to appear less articulate than they are but because it has been estimated that once you start speechifying beyond and 8th grade level you are only communicating around 30% of you audience. I don’t know if this is an affliction peculiar to our age but I suspect Demosthenes was not really speaking to the common man either. But you are right, loweing the bar only leaves us further to slide.

  63. Delia Harrington says:

    great post! it’s strange how uncomfortable everyone gets with a certain level of certainty. i think there’s a sort of internal need for everyone to be as uncertain as they are, and those who aren’t are often seen as hotheads, stubborn or extreme.

  64. I bet some of it also comes from trying to be PC. I know for example, when leaving comments on blogs -where people can’t even hear me speaking- I’ll go back and add little things like “ya know?” and “in my opinion” just to kinda….smooth over what I’m saying and make sure it doesn’t offend people.

    But I have to say, my first instinct is that this is a generation gap thing. People’s style of speaking changes over time (the trends in speaking, I mean). Yes, it annoys me when people end their declarative sentences like questions, but it’s not all that unusual to be unsure of your point or insecure about speaking your mind at a young age…..in my opinion (lol).

  65. Tamara says:

    Awesome post. Fyi that I tweeted this out and attributed you via your posttag here. I’ll be showing this video to my first year undergraduates tomorrow during our tutorial on how to write for the social sciences. Thanks for sharing it.

  66. kevin says:

    GREAT BLOG! i really love it! =) it is time for people to make a stand for their own.

  67. acidted says:

    But I don’t want to spread disease. What should I do?

  68. ptero9 says:

    Great topic! Although I am of a generation that predates the fondness for like, the word “like”, and generally find myself unsatisfied with the level of conversation throughout our culture, my optimism lies in knowing that there are sparks of boldness around us if we seek them out.

    I recently read an article that claims that the most important thing to younger folks is to not be seen as taking oneself too seriously. I wonder what you think of that?

    Here is the link to the article by Mark Ames: http://exiledonline.com/the-rally-to-restore-vanity-generation-x-celebrates-its-homeric-struggle-against-lameness/


  69. Pingback: Things I Love Thursday. « Her Softly Spoken Heart

  70. Pingback: Talkin’ ’bout my generation… « Ptero9's Blog

  71. Zabrina T. says:

    I really enjoyed reading this because I think about this issue myself very often. I feel as though people (our age/generation) very rarely speak completely truthfully. I see it a lot more with girls, but when one says a simple statement, they need to see/hear/feel agreement. I also think that a lot of people just repeat opinions that they hear from their peers, because more often than not, when I hear surprisingly opinionated statements about any given topic or issue, it sounds very familiar to me; I’ve heard or read it before.

    I loved the video you posted as well; it is a perfect enhancement to your blog. I agree with it 100%. People used to say “ya know” to see if people knew what they were talking about, but now, I think people say it just to reassure themselves that what they are saying is accepted by listeners. People are so insecure that they need everyone around them to approve of what they say, think, and do. It is also very sad to me that (as you mentioned) in classrooms, kids will hold their opinions or input in just because no one else is talking or answering questions. Smart kids who don’t want to be the one who stands up and expresses their knowledge could be overlooked, and not be rewarded for their intelligence. I think this a deeper issue, that possibly starts when kids are young. When there is bullying, laughing, outcasting, etc. Kids learn from a young age that it isn’t good to be different, and that they should try to fit in to the popular mold of a kid their age. It happens to everyone, and it will take a lot of effort to stop it.

    I like the short and sweet way that you wrote your blog. I like your personal connections to this issue, and your opinions that go along with them. The blog was very easy to read and agree with. I also enjoyed how you bolded and italicized words that you wanted attention paid to. Overall, this was a great blog about an issue that doesn’t get much attention. Thank you for speaking up.

  72. Adam Miller says:

    Great point and great typography. I’ve seen it before by your added notes were perfectly suited. Well done.

  73. Pingback: Words of Encouragement | Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow

  74. Wow, it seems my comment might be lost somewhere in the other 86. Nice job!

    I like this post a lot. I don’t know how many times I have sat in class waiting for someone else to answer the question when I know it, too. Sometimes I speak up, but other times I’m frozen by something– by what? Even when it’s happening, I can’t explain it. You’re right, though… it’s probably my fear of being wrong.

    Our generation is raised to seek perfection and to BE afraid of making mistakes. Anything other than perfect is cast out as different and incorrect. I really hope we move away from this so people actually have the opportunity to grow and aren’t petrified by fear or whatever it is that’s got a chokehold on classrooms and other group settings across the country.

    I liked the progression this post took- it went from the general idea to more detailed ones with opinion, and ended with your proposals for solution and what you thought about the whole situation. Adding links and videos also really add to readability of your blog, which is always a pleasure to do. The only thing I’d like to see more of is what you have to say! The brevity makes it more of a think piece, but I know you have some great thoughts, and I would really like to read them. But once again, nice job!

  75. typhonalive says:

    Very nice post and video. I know some people don’t want to ask questions in class for fear of being seen as stupid, but I firmly believe that the stupid student is the one that doesn’t ask the question.

    So I’m going to try to not say ‘like’ as was challenged… you know? πŸ™‚

    Thanks for the post.

  76. Nice post !! It’s not just classroom walls, even workplaces till the going gets really tough and it seems impossible to move on, the quietness stops. Guess, we all should start off earlier with the questions in classroom for a start: to get that habit of “not keeping quiet!!”

  77. Pingback: Typographic Animation: Think About It (via Open Your Eyes, Your Mind Will Follow) « Laura Barbosa's Heart of Art Blog

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  79. If there is something that you don’t understand in class there is most likely at least one other person harboring the same question. There is also at least one other person who will go “oh, yeah!” when you ask your question because its answer will shine light on total understanding of the topic.
    But its not only classroom etiquette that squanders our voices. Most relationships and interactions suffer this same problem.
    thats why this is my favorite quote: http://pangeaibelieve.wordpress.com/quotations-and-inspirations/

    live by it.

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