Before people understand what plain language is, they often come up with reasons for not using it. A common objection is that it will ‘dumb down’ what they need to say.
People who work in technical fields tend to think it’s impossible to describe complex details without using complex language. Or they feel it’s degrading to use plain language to explain their specialist subject. Sometimes they worry that if they try, other experts will think worse of them.
But can language really be ‘dumbed down’?
Does explaining a complex subject in a way that’s easy to understand make it any less important or interesting? Does it make intelligent people less likely to engage with the subject? Does it make the subject only fit for ‘dumb’ people?
Of course not.
Using plain language simply makes your subject accessible to a larger number of people. Even if you’re writing for other experts only, they’ll benefit from being able to read, absorb, and use what you’ve written more quickly.
There’s no such thing as ‘dumbing down’. Using plain language means communicating well. And anyone who’s expert at anything should strive to communicate what they know. That’s what smart people do.