This hits home on so many levels—and triggers a lot of self-loathing, at the same time. While it’s not the same point, I can’t help but be reminded of various writers in the past admonishing to reduce words when possible. For example, Mark Twain’s “Don’t use a five-dollar word when a fifty-cent word will do.”
Anyway, for a related example of how unclear, “innovative” copy has real effects on user behavior, check out how Appcues’ copy was thwarting activation and inducing “rage clicks.” In short, users would click a button and get the copy “Warming up our engines.” The intent was to make the user realize “Things are happening on the backend, just wait a second,” but users got confused, rage clicked the button, and many ended up bouncing.
Going for clearer copy solved the problem.