Stupid Ways To Present A Powerpoint

Note: This blog entry was posted on Multiply on September 22, 2008. To view current posts, click here.

Most of us have used and/or encountered powerpoint presentations these days. With the world becoming more electronic, interconnected and interactive, multimedia presentations such as the Power Point have become popular: from simple homemade use up to the corporate world.

Nevertheless, I have observed a number of blunders, and I think it is time to bring these up. Mind you, though, that these are only my personal observations, as preferences do differ from one person to another.

1. Excessive animation usage. Though slide transitions and animated text do entertain people, excessive usage makes them irritating. How do you think irritating and distracting power point presentations are when you observe that almost all of the presented information in the slides is animated, ranging from falling words and letters to complicated slide transitions as those used in the Mac? Not only these slow the computer down, but it deflects the user’s attention from the information the observer is supposed to take in to the animations and effects used in the slides.

2. All information is in the slides, and the reporter (or whoever is presenting) only read what is in the slides. Hello people, power point presentations are supposed to be media helpers, not bulletin boards! Not only you are wasting electricity and your time, but you are also boring people to death! Just give us a handout, and we would gladly read it on our own.

3. Animated backgrounds. Same as the explanation in number one, not only animated backgrounds slow down a computer, but also captures the user’s attention to the point that the user does not understand anything at all.

4. Destructing smooth transitions by compressing data on one or several slides and depending PURELY on animation to get things work. I have seen this a lot of times, and I am not impressed. Say, combined with animated backgrounds, this really becomes a nuisance, not only to the viewer but also to the presenter(s). Hello people, are you STILL using a floppy disk in place of a hard drive? Well, you may also try this for impressing people, that is if you can REALLY handle things SMOOTHLY; that is, no troubleshooting during the presentation process. Not only this makes you unprofessional, but also irritates your viewers. If you REALLY want to make slides link with each other, use HYPERLINKS. What are they for if you don’t use them, anyway?

5. Multiple Backgrounds. It is okay to do this, but use sparingly. Imagine a powerpoint presentations with LITERALLY each slide differing in backgrounds? You are only wasting your effort to impress your viewers.

6. Broken, broken, broken. Broken links, incompatible file types… anything else you can think of. The moral: Check your presentation files first before presenting it to the public.

So far, this is only the ones I could think of.

DISCLAIMER: I am not saying that I didn’t commit those errors. I do commit #1 most of the time. But then, I think some people just always miss the point, and commit those mistakes all over again.

Also, I am not looking for a fight, I am just sharing my personal experiences. That’s what blogs are for, aren’t they? I am not saying that THIS is the only aspect of blogs, but ONE of its aspects.

I am not afraid; so you must not too. Feel free to comment. Also, if you know of other blunders, just post ’em here.


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