Yes, I entitled this article correctly. I did not leave out a word. I am definitely referring to the word ‘god’, not the word of God.
So what about the word, “god”? Well, I just got a new program designed to help me write email that will not get caught in most people’s spam filter. It is a really great tool and along the left-hand column of this program is a space dedicated to suggestions I might want to consider as regards the content of my text. Mostly, it warns me about words that trigger spam filters.
Now this program can also be used as a helpful tool for writing articles for web sites. Since this program is brand new to me, I took a short article from my archives and loaded it into the program, to see what it would have to say about the article. You see, this program will also rate the readability your article as well, via the Readability Box.
The Readability box provides you with two ratings that will assist you in making sure that your message is easy to read. Both of these ratings are recognized as being amongst the best ways of providing a readability rating based on the length of words and number of syllables used.
The Flesch Reading Ease is a figure between 0 and 100 where 0 is very difficult to read and 100 is very easy to read. Aim to have a readability score around 60 to 70.
The Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level provides a rating that is equivalent to US grade-school levels, e.g. a score of 7.0 means that a typical seventh grade student (about 12 years old) should be able to understand the document.
So it was good to know that the article I had written had a Flesch Reading Ease of 71.8 and a Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level of 7.4.
What was interesting to discover, is that under the list of suggestions as regards spam-filters, there was a certain low-level suggestion that was repeated several times. It said, “The word ‘god’ can be picked up by some spam filters. Worth avoiding if you can.”
Now since this is categorized as a low-priority according to the suggestion “legend”, I would normally not think anything about it. However, in the manual that came with this program it warns that,
Usually, you will not be too worried about making changes to suggestions marked as trivial, but if you notice that your message has a considerable amount of trivial suggestions you might want to take action on at least some of them. The reason for this is that many spam filters use cumulative scoring which means that several trivial spam characteristics can be just as bad as a single critical one.
Now “Trivial” is at the bottom of the “Legend for Suggestions”. “Low” is one step above trivial. So if several “trivial spam characteristics can be just as bad as a single critical one,” then I wonder if the same is true for the low-level suggestions. In other words, if I send an email talking about God (this short article used the word god ten times), does that mean that there are a number of people who will not get the message because they do not want to hear about God? I can’t help but wonder how many people have set their spam filters to weed out any and all email messages that talk about God.
I find the fact that people would do such a thing absolutely amazing and utterly disappointing. And it gives me pause to consider how many of my email “contacts” use either a personal spam filter and/or an email program (such as AOL, Yahoo, Gmail or Outlook) to automatically filter out email messages if the word god is used more that two or three times.
Perhaps that explains why I almost never hear back from anyone on my personal contact list when I send out certain messages that talk about the things and ways of God – even though these “contacts” profess to be Christian and love God.
Of note, I have used the word god 11 (oops! make that 12) times in this message and I have six sentences with thirty or more words in them. So I guess anyone who doesn’t like to hear about God and can’t comprehend anything but short sentences, stopped reading this message a long time ago. And I guess that is why so many Bibles sit on shelves collecting dust and/or rarely get read, except on Sunday mornings while in church (and then only short scripture passages). Right?