Rhetorical Velocity

Rhetorical velocity considers kairos and delivery. In current terms, Sheridan, Ridolfo, and Michel are thinking about viral distribution or spreadability. Delivery hasn't been thought about as part of rhetorical expediency - except by tech writers - and hasn't be theorized for a while.

> Rhetorical velocity refers to the way rhetors strategize about the potential recomposition and redistribution of a text. Available Means of Persuasion, 79

Digital texts circulate in and between digital spaces in ways that make it expedient for composers to take that circulation into account as they plan and enact the text. Twitter, instagram, and the usual suspects. But include Fedwiki in a way that this does not include the traditional wiki.

Let's think about how texts circulate - essentially spawning other texts. This is a desire of promotional messages, that the rhetors seek to have retweeted, reused - and with the tension that comes of loosening ownership.

This is also the desire of open source texts, which intend remixing, re-contexualizing, being annotated and recirculated - especially if we think of recirculated as not just being read but being adapted, copied, pasted, placed in social contexts such that others add and gain value. Eg, Pintrest or Pinboard, Zotoro.

I collect and annotate sources - that makes them more valuable to me, and possibly more valuable to others, such as students. Or I tweet links to sources, with a remark,… or place a source on a FB page, which may not change the source but does change the rhetorical significance of it, depending on how I handle it.

The thinking here is how to compose to facilitate recirculation. The strategies vary by medium and the environment it circulates in. - twitter is good for retweeting - video would want to consider facilitating remixing - images to consider embedding and remixing and repurposing. - the design of texts can be tweaked for annotating - Fedwiki writing needs to consider how to facilitate recomposition

Some examples - tweets to be recirculated would use appropriate hashtags and room in the 140 char limit for RT and commentary - images posted to flickr would be CC licensed and flickr settings made to make embed easy - commenting can be encouraged - new ways of recirculating (Fedwiki, Wikity) would be devised - strategies of recirculation would become part of digital literacy

All would want to consider where texts are placed for distro and licensing.

My interest in recirculation and Fedwiki is not the range or speed of recirculation so much as how else to facilitate reuse, both in design of the means and design of the text.


Mike C and Ward have both considered recirculation in their recommendations on a Fedwiki style.

How to Wiki is informed by recirculation.

Mike's Wikity Style Guide is brief. Also wikity

A Fedwiki Style Sheet is informed by recirculation, but could be revised for emphasis.

Here's a project in E-Rhetoric: wiki .

Here's a more detailed project that studies the recirculation on memes, by David Bedsole blog