Comments on YouTube; Facebook posts; Amazon reviews; Yelp reviews; Memes…

These are all genres that never existed when I was in college. Each one has its own community. Each one has its own rules.

When I read them, I feel: Everyone in these communities seems to know the rules about how to write in them — only, the rules were never posted anywhere.

I feel kind of left out.

I imagine that others share the same feeling about writing 850-word English essays. “What’s the purpose?” “Who is on the other side of this — who cares about this?” “I need to know more about what this is for or else I may look foolish.”