January 2013


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Glen Beltt <[log in to unmask]>
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UofMN Web Standards <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 28 Jan 2013 10:52:56 -0600
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The point in Kris' presentation about needing to know your audience is 
valid, but the JFK "Ich bin ein Berliner" example may not be the best 
possible illustration. The story about the phrase having been 
interpreted as "I am a jelly doughnut" is a long-standing 
(untrue) urban legend 

As was intended, the phrase was actually understood to mean "I am one 
with the people of Berlin." The alternative, "Ich bin Berliner," would 
have been parsed as "I am from Berlin," which was obviously not the 
case.  As one of the linked references notes, "Similarly, after 9-11 
many politicians said 'today we are all New Yorkers' and nobody thought 
they meant 'we are all glossy magazines' or 'we are all cars.'" Further, 
jelly doughnuts are generally referred to in Berlin as/Pfannkuchen/, not 

As it turns out, JFK's speech-writers knew their audience pretty well in 
that case.

Glen Beltt
University of Minnesota Foundation

On 1/25/2013 2:11 PM, Layon, Kristofer wrote:
> Thanks so much for setting up the video capture, Tony!  (and thanks to 
> Gabe and the other Web Standards meeting organizers)
> It was great to be back on campus today  thanks to everyone who 
> attended.  The slides (with notes) from my talk are here:
> http://wp.me/p1r51W-8Z
> Have a good weekend,
> Kris
> Kristofer Layon
> Web & Mobile Design  //  Product Management  //  Speaking & Writing
> http://www.kristoferlayon.com/
> @klayon