This is what we do next: we weaponize the verbatim transcript. Stop cleaning the transcripts; stop displaying soundbites and printing cleaned quotes. Print the whole thing, each and every time. Annotate them, don’t cherry pick. Any given speech or interview is not a continuous series of soundbites, the juiciest of which gets passed along. Rather, a soundbite is extracted like a jewel from the mud. A transcript offers a chance to make sense of the mud of regular talking, so let’s get the mud of Trump’s regular talking to work against him, amplified by the inherent weirdness of the transcript. The verbatim transcript is the chink in the autocrat’s armor — as long as you have a free press in which to print them.
My plea to designers and software engineers: Ignore the fads and go back to the typographic principles of print — keep your type black, and vary weight and font instead of grayness. You’ll be making things better for people who read on smaller, dimmer screens, even if their eyes aren’t aging like mine. It may not be trendy, but it’s time to consider who is being left out by the web’s aesthetic.