This is a reaction letter to the featured poorly constructed article “If College Majors Were Flowers” that does not even meet Odyssey expectations. I am not entirely sure what the author was trying to achieve with this- humor, maybe? Likes? Either way it did not deserve to featured, let alone posted.
There were many inexplicable mistakes made in the submission of this article- between the Creator to the Editor and to Odyssey Headquarters. It is beyond me as to why it was accepted by the editor to be published and even more so why Odyssey featured it- and still does on their facebook page. It does not even meet the most basic of Odyssey Creator Guidelines.
1. It lacks content. The article contains a small paragraph- mostly urging you to share the article with your friends, a picture of dead flowers and one (poorly assumed) definitive sentence- “Let’s be honest, as college students, we’re all dead on the inside.” There is no interesting, humorous or informative content to this article.
2. The third rule in the Odyssey Creator Guidelines states “I am aware that...poor social engagement (“Please Share!”..is a no-no) are cardinal sins of Odyssey Culture.” This article literally says “share with your friends”. It commits a cardinal sin of Odyssey Culture.
3. Page eight of the Odyssey Creator Guidelines states “As Odyssey Staff we believe in writing sentences that have a deep purpose and impact in our communities, using reason and facts to back up our claims…” None of the five sentences making up this article resonate this belief. There is no real impact- unless you consider the negative reaction an impact.The creator fails to tell us why each major equates a dead flower. There are no facts or reason to back up the lack of purpose in this article.
4. Page 10 of the Odyssey Creator Guidelines gives tips on how to be the best content creator you can be: using your experiences, help people better understand the world by being creative, and considering your impact. This article does not show consideration for any of these tips. There is no experience, no creativity in understanding the world, and no real lasting impact. Unless you want to believe all college students are dead on the inside based on what might be this Creator’s unfortunate experiences, it fails to follow any of these simple tips.
4.5 This article does succeed in one part of the tips given on page 10; one bullet of tip three “did your network talk about it?” In this sense, yes we did talk about it. Not in a way of admiration or agreement, but rather disagreement and annoyance. So on that note, congratulations for meeting one-fourth of one out of three tips.
5. Pages 15-19 of the Creator Guidelines gives us tips on how to capture our audience with our headlines. The headline for this article “If Majors Were Flowers” is considered an “Identity” headline (Page 17)- capturing the audience because it appears to speak to their identity, however metaphoric it may be.The thrill of this article should be the ability to connect and relate to the flower you are supposedly identified as based on your major. Most college students do not identify themselves as dead flowers. The headline lies to us as an audience.
6. Page 20 of the Creator Guidelines suggest how to go about our social briefs- the short excerpt or *teaser* about the story you are about to engage in. The social brief here does make you want to click the link- but it does not really tease the story. “Can you really disagree?” almost begs for a rebuttal because yes, actually I can disagree. I think the author needs to go to counseling if she thinks everyone is that dark.
7. Page 14 of Odyssey Creator Guidelines provides a list of categories for our articles to fall under. The category is based on the content of the article. Since this article lacks content, it does not fall under any of the given categories. Of the ones I would consider it to have possibly been under: “500 Words On”; it only provides 66 words. “Humor”; it certainly lacks humor, although I assume this is what the Creator was aiming for. “Ideas”; it is not a profound idea nor does it reach the 800 word expectation for articles to meet this vertical. “The List”; this article had the potential to be considered a list had the Creator actually provided the content we were led to believe existed. Had they given us each major and the flower they would identify with it would certainly be considered a list. There are nine given categories our articles can be provided under and this article does not meet any one of their requirements.
8. Odyssey requires articles to be at a minimum of 500 words. This article is not remotely 500 words. It is a mere 66 words. This should not be acceptable content.
9. Odyssey grammar suggestions include limiting contractions. This article contains three contractions. And not only does it have three contractions but the only three instances in which a contraction could be used are contractions. There was not even an attempt at avoiding them.
This article is one of the most poorly written articles lacking any kind of content. It does not please the audience it is aiming to grab. It fails to meet a total of eight Odyssey Creator Guidelines. The whole 66 words fails nine requirements. Not only do I not understand the Creator’s purpose or intent for this article, I fail to see why it was published and even less why it was featured. By sharing this article on the Odyssey facebook page, headquarters essentially throws away its own handbook telling Creators it is acceptable to write less-than-exceptional pieces. This is not what Odyssey should be about. There are a number of remarkable Creators writing to the expectations and beyond every week who should be recognized and featured instead of pieces such as this. It is disappointing not only to the audience to see this lack of content, but even more discouraging to the other Creators.
As far as college majors as flowers go, every college major is its own beautifully thriving flower. None of us are actually dead inside. Every major is necessary for the success of society. Each major identifies as one very important addition to the way the world goes around. Every individual college major effects the way we work. Each one provides something important to the world. Majors furnish the real life world in their own way. Just as each flower contributes its own magic to add the aesthetic of a garden, every major is its own flower in the vast garden of society. If all the majors were simply dead flowers the world would be at a standstill and there would be no tiers of success. We are not dead inside. In fact we are flourishing quite well, blooming without an end in sight.