Rhetorical art


Word clouds based on the members’ statements of Liberal and Conservative MPs during March.


Rhetorical art

  1. Pretty propagandistic to link to approvingly, even for you, Wherry.

    • Well, admittedly there’s some editorial comment on the Tory one, and it would be nice to see just the two clouds without the editorial stuff (and clouds for the Bloc and NDP too), but I’m not sure this is exactly “propaganda”, and it certainly wouldn’t be without the editorial stuff in the top image. These are just word clouds of the words MPs actually used. Beyond the extra comments in the one (which, as I said, I think would be best left out) I think it’s a fascinating view of what the parties are talking about in their Members statements.

      More importantly, I think “approvingly” in your comment might be a bit of projection on your part. With the possible exception of the word “art”, I don’t think anything in Wherry’s post suggests an OPINION about the post he’s linking to one way or another. Seems a pretty straight-up “here’s a link” post to me.

        • LOL,

          Well, maybe, just maybe, a word cloud based on a one paragraph blog comment is not as insightful as a word cloud based on every word said by every MP of a party during Members statements over an entire month, no?

          On a side note, did you really have to log in with my username, lol. What if I want to get an account now? I’ll have to come up with a whole new username, and it’ll get all confusing.


          • LKO, Your one paragraph wordcloud, ‘ONE POST’, gave me a nice mind tickle and I think it is every bit as credit-able and in-site-full as is the Webster’s Dictionary wordcloud or the week-long-Ontario- Legislature-Hansard webcloud or the Constitution Act webcloud.
            From your cloud I picked out : Talking Art / Opinion / Comments without Comment / One Post . Don’t you think that wordclouds are an art form that can reliably release meaning from the cage of grammar?

  2. I hate word clouds. I could produce a word cloud from any document in about six minutes, without generating any meaningful insight. Word clouds appeal to the credulous, but they are otherwise useless.

    • I’d say that’s a bit harsh. Sure, you could produce a word cloud from a document without generating any meaningful insight, but I don’t think it’s therefore axiomatic that a word cloud is incapable of generating any meaningful insight.

      • I acknowledge the possibility that somewhere, somehow, a word cloud is capable of generating actual insight. I haven’t seen any such mythical word clouds, but I suppose there’s a slim chance that one exists.

        • I created Bill-C51 , English and French wordcloud.
          The Grammar is the subject of the cloud. So the next step nearer to insight would be to strip the text of it’s grammatical constructions (and I haven’t got time for that today…) and then I’m sure the priorities of Bill-C-51 would become clear.

      • LOL.

  3. Anyone else getting royally sick of the word clouds the Toronto Star seems to use for every single speech?

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