Technology Meets Rhetoric: A Rogerian Methodological Review of the Visual Rhetoric of Websites Concerned with Abortion

          Reviewing certain anti- and pro-life websites (e.g. Planned Parenthood and the National Right to Life Committee) for a rhetorical analysis using the Rogerian method of argumentation requires that a litany of technological concepts and standards should be addressed first before the content of the websites (the merits or disadvantages of their front pages, color schemes, diction, content saturation, etc.) can be determined.  A significant challenge is that the technical jargon which most information technology professionals use may be unfamiliar to the general population.  A second significant challenge is that many Americans may not be aware of the Rogerian method of argumentation, let alone the Aristotelian, the system with which it is most often contrasted.

          [slide two]  Since this paper focuses on the rhetorical quality of anti- and pro-life websites, material will be presented in the following order.  First, the paper will examine standards which IT professionals recommend for websites.  Second, a summary of key aspects of the Aristotelian and Rogerian methods of argumentation will be presented.  For greater audience participation, two quizzes will be conducted at this point in the presentation.  Third, an interactive analysis of representative websites will be provided.  Finally, time will be reserved for questions and answers.

Standards for Websites

What standards for websites do IT professionals establish?  Who in the industry has the authority to set or promulgate these standards?  How frequently are these standards amended?  Since there is no single publication which can answer these multifaceted questions, determining the criteria by which websites are established involves a review of major titles written by a variety of IT professionals, often in expansive editions replete with technical jargon.  The following chronological review isolates major ideas about website construction in recent popular monographs, easily accessible through academic or public libraries.  For convenience’s sake and to meet time demands for this presentation, “recent” means since the beginning of this century, a span of fourteen years, which, according to common knowledge, can equal an age in computer technology.[1]

[slide three]  Dick Oliver and Charles Ashbacher’s Sams Teach Yourself HTML and XHTML in 24 Hours (5th ed., 2001) shows how far those interested in constructing websites have come.  The authors’ initial recommendations include these four important (and now simple) steps: “get a computer” ([9], “get a connection to the Internet”, “get a Web browser program” (10), and “explore!” (11).  Their work contains substantial technical suggestions, ranging from commentary on a site’s background color (“white to match the background that most Web browsers use” 140) to the appropriate text colors (the “16 standard Windows colors: black, white, red, green, blue, yellow, magenta, cyan, purple, gray, lime, maroon, navy, olive, silver, and teal” 162).  They further suggest that users “Stick to the named colors and don’t waste time mucking with hexadecimal color codes—unless you have precise control over your intended audience’s computer displays” (165).

The authors provide a succinct table titled “Key Elements of Web Page Design” (191).  Since this table is carried in electronic format on a site dated 2014, the criteria established there, which are identical to this 2001 work, will be discussed later.  Beyond their own recommendations, the authors refer to official standards set by the World Wide Web Consortium ( on unnumbered page 409) and unofficial sources such as, which interestingly cites as the worst website for 2013 (411).

[side four]  Two suggestions by Oliver and Ashbacher address rhetorical aspects more than technical, and their recommendations are as valid today as before:

The first page that a visitor sees should always begin by explaining what the site is about and provide enough introductory information to “hook” the intended audience while getting rid of anyone who really has no interest [….]  In all aspects of your site design, keep in mind the following fact: Studies have repeatedly shown that people become confused and annoyed when presented with more than seven choices at a time, and people feel most comfortable with five or fewer choices.  Therefore, you should avoid presenting more than five links (either in a list or as graphical icons) next to one another and never present more than seven at once.  (341-3)

          [slide five]  Like the previous authors, Mark Bell’s Build a Website for Free (2009) continues the bifurcation of website design books which address not only technical, but also rhetorical matters.  Bell’s technical recommendations include the following, based on his philosophy to “keep things as simple as possible” (39).  First, he recommends that website developers reserve 15% of the web page as a header and another 15% as a footer (37).  He also identifies the “magic four” colors for text: red, yellow, black, and white (44).

          [slide six]  Rhetorically, Bell encourages developers to answer three questions under the planning stage of the website creation process: “Why am I building this website?”, “What are the website’s goals?”, and “Who [sic] do I want to visit my website?” (13).  Once these matters have been addressed, the developer can focus on content, which should be “personal”, “high quality”, and “unique” (76).

          [slide seven]  Except for some technical suggestions about the sixteen colors and recommending fonts (“If you want to be really conservative, you won’t go wrong with any of these fonts: Times, Arial, Helvetica, Courier” 157), Matthew MacDonald’s Creating a Web Site: The Missing Manual. (2nd ed., 2009) conveys more rhetorical suggestions than previous web page development manuals.  “Once you pinpoint your Web site’s raison d’être,” he writes, “you should have a better idea about who your visitors will be.  Knowing and understanding your audience is [sic] crucial to making your Web site effective” (17).  Reiterating other authors’ themes, MacDonald urges web developers to “Keep it simple” (19), “Be consistent”, and, to reinforce the point, “Know your audience” (20).

          [slide eight]  Besides citing some technical information, such as how website URLs can be obtained (, MacDonald’s work then suggests ways to advertise and promote websites, such as accessing the Open Directory Project, (313); using a special feature on Google where one’s URL can be added directly, (317); and participating in Amazon’s affiliate program, (381).

          What is the current teaching on website standards?  Two sources in the past two years can be cited.  [slide nine]  The entry for “web page design” in the Dictionary of Computer and Internet Terms (11th ed., 2013) lists eight guidelines “for designing a good” web page:

1. Decide on the purpose of your web page.

2.  Plan for maintainability.

3.  If you want people to visit your web site repeatedly, put something useful there….

4. Do not draw attention to the wrong things.

5.  Remember that you do not have a captive audience.

6.  Remember that some people still use older browsers.

7.  Use dark type on a white background for anything the reader may need to print out.

8.  Attach links to informative words, not the word “here.”  (547)

[slide ten]  The second source repeats what Oliver and Ashbacher identified as significant elements of website development in their 2001 work.  Several elements of Oliver’s 2014 chart directly address rhetorical matters much more than technical ones.

For example, Oliver’s recommendation regarding “a headline, rule or image every 40 to 100 words” is consistent with contemporary thinking about reading activities.  Students for several decades have shied away from reading solid blocks of text, and the tendency to avoid such blocks has transferred to their lives beyond academia.  The “two tofour [sic] thematic colors” suggestion is further consistent with contemporary color theorists.  Monochromatic websites are fatally boring, and polychromatic ones, while interesting for persons with attention deficit, are annoying to ordinary readers.[2]  The recommendation that 50% of a page should be blank space follows current theories about the readability factor; the more white space a document has, the more likely it will be read.  The last two suggestions (regarding “tone and style” and “overall impact”) suggest that Oliver wants his readers to be keenly aware of the audience’s psychographics.  How one determines the “mood” of an audience and whether a population considers a site “balanced and attractive” is extremely difficult absent market analysis, but a noteworthy goal.  [slide eleven][3]

          Finally, while IT professionals and website developers may have been more concerned with the technical aspects of website production and design in the first decade of this new millennium, many writers in this second decade have progressed from critique of features of websites and software used to design them to commentary on the technological progress achieved thus far.  Often, the commentary no longer endorses technological innovation on the web in enthusiastic terms, but examines controversial ideas generated by the success of certain well-known Internet sites.  Two such critics are Ian Lloyd and Danah Boyd.

[slide twelve]  Ian Lloyd has significant cautionary words about Facebook in his Build Your Own Website the Right Way Using HTML & CSS (3rd ed., 2011).  That he criticizes Facebook using comical language testifies to his ability to convey a deeper problem inherent in the world’s premiere social networking site so that his audience (virtually all of whom use the service) will not resist his message.

Just as Jupiter sits there in our solar system, sucking in most of the errant space dust and asteroids that swing past it like some astronomical vacuum cleaner, Facebook is this monstrous (in size, not nature…or not always!) presence, drawing in ever more people.  And for many people, once they arrive, they’re content to never leave.  (302; italics in original)

While he offers these humorous words in the context of whether businesses should or should not use Facebook, educated contemporary readers see that Lloyd has struck on deeper problems.  Younger people use social networking services like Facebook, but cannot communicate well face-to-face.  English professors can testify that writing skills have suffered from an audience raised on texting abbreviations and emoticons.  Ironically, one can be socially networked with thousands of Facebook “friends” or LinkedIn “connections” yet be the loneliest person on the planet without human interaction.

[slide thirteen]  Danah Boyd’s It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens (2014) offers much trenchant commentary on the impact of social networking on teenagers.  Two of her ideas are worth mentioning here as examples of the rhetorical force of online services.

Networked publics are publics that are restructured by networked technologies.  As such, they are simultaneously (1) the space constructed through networked technologies and (2) the imagined community that emerges as a result of the intersection of people, technology, and practice.  (8; italics added)

The two highlighted words in this stipulative definition suggest several challenges for any website developer, one of which depends not only on the study of demographics (as Boyd examines in her study of teens), but also on psychographic factors.  How does one attempt to reach an audience which uses social media and Internet connectivity as a way to express themselves and their sense of “community”?  How does one know how to convey a controversial position to an audience whose worldview may be either unknown or diametrically opposed to that of the web developer?  More specifically for pro-life entities, how does one communicate a life-affirming message to an audience which may be unfamiliar with or hostile to life affirmation when the media they are constantly exposed to (broadcast television, background radio at work or in public places) are anti-life?

[slide fourteen]  Boyd further addresses a controversial issue raging in academia, the first life-impacting force that young adults face beyond the home.  Faculty are generally admonished to consider some Internet sites as unreliable sources for their students, and one such site is Wikipedia, which is probably the premiere site that young adults in colleges and universities consult when writing research papers.  Although faculty attitudes toward Wikipedia may be changing, the distrust of the site as a source for reputable information is a staple of academic discourse.  Boyd, however, in her defense of the site, illustrates the nature of knowledge production in contemporary life which has profound implications not only for the role of the faculty member in the academy, but also for any developer of a website who is concerned about the rhetorical purpose of his or her site.  She writes that

Wikipedia can be a phenomenal educational tool, but few educators I met knew how to use it constructively.  Unlike other sources of information, including encyclopedias and books by credible authors, the entire history of how users construct a Wikipedia entry is visible.  By looking at the “history” of a page, a viewer can see when someone made edits, who did the editing, and what that user edited.  By looking at the discussion, it’s possible to read the debates that surround the edits.  Wikipedia isn’t simply a product of knowledge; it’s also a record of the process by which people share and demonstrate knowledge.  (188-9)

Although the epistemological question remains, the mere fact that most students use the site and that many faculty are open to its use will decide the acceptability of the service in the next few years.  The question for pro-life website developers is profound: if young adults are accustomed to accessing websites which disclose “the process by which people share and demonstrate knowledge”, then to what degree do pro-life sites engage in this process and disclose how information is presented?  Furthermore, how can young people interact with and respond to such knowledge?

Key Aspects of the Aristotelian and Rogerian Methods of Argumentation

          [slide fifteen]  The basis for argumentation over the millennia, Aristotle’s method of arguing controversial issues involves the concepts of ethos (which is the credibility of the person arguing a position), kairos (the appropriateness of the situation), logos (the use of logic and the avoidance of fallacies), and pathos (emotions appropriately used).  The idea is that, if all four concepts are used well to advocate a particular stance, one can convince another to adopt one’s perspective.  For example, if an expert on Islamic terrorism speaks before a patriotic American audience using facts and statistics about the incidences of Islamic terrorism since 9/11 and interjects several poignant episodes of such terrorism, then one would achieve his or her goals of arguing for intensive action against such terrorism.  If any one of these items is altered, the argument may not be persuasive.  For example, while one may be an expert on Islamic terrorism, if one were to speak at a mosque where the audience may not necessarily be composed of all patriotic American Muslims, using a logical approach and interjecting poignant episodes may not be sufficient to overcome the obvious problem in the presentation.  Thus, one may lose his or her audience and not move the persons listening to believe in, let alone act on, one’s goal of action against Islamic terrorists.

          [slide sixteen]  The implications of the Aristotelian method are profound for pro-life speakers and writers.  Consider the four Aristotelian concepts vis-à-vis these scenarios:

1.  55-year-old white male speaking before African Americans about the high abortion rate in that demographic

2.  22-year-old stay-at-home mother blogging about biomedical issues

3.  Male activist showing bloody pictures of aborted babies before a group of agnostic millennials

4.  Byzantine Catholic senior citizen woman wearing a crucifix as she speaks before a congregation of Orthodox Jews about Nazi atrocities and euthanasia

Each of these four situations involves one or all of the four Aristotelian concepts, and the challenge for the pro-life speaker or writer (or, by extension, blogger, Facebooker, Google+er, LinkedIner, Twitterer, etc.) is two-fold: to be aware of the four concepts while he or she is speaking or writing and to avoid impediments to the transmission of the pro-life message as best he or she can.

          [slide seventeen]  While he is more well-known as a psychologist, Carl Rogers is credited with developing a method of argumentation which may not necessarily replace, but enhances some aspects of the Aristotelian.  The Rogerian method, in contrast to the Aristotelian, aims for common ground on a controversial issue.  Although there are differing categories of Rogers’ work, the main features of his system are easy to identify.  It is based on empathic listening, a technique which forces one to listen to a complete disclosure of another’s person opposing viewpoint.  When such listening is adopted, one can respect and, optimally, understand, if not agree with, an opponent’s position.  “Collaborative negotiation” (which, according to a standard textbook definition, means “reducing antagonism toward those with different beliefs, initiating small steps in understanding, cultivating mutual respect, and encouraging further problem solving”) is then possible.  Since this method strives to reach common ground on a controversial issue, the result is not necessarily to convince, but to reach consensus, albeit a tentative one (Ramage, Bean, and Johnson 141-3).

          [slide eighteen]  How would the Rogerian scheme make argumentation different, especially for activists on the first life issue of abortion?  If the summary points of Rogerian argument are correct, then the four scenarios reviewed earlier using the Aristotelian method would be approached much differently.  Moreover, the Rogerian method poses substantial problems for activists on the life issues.  Listening to position statements from opposing sides of a controversial issue which may be constructed in biased or inflammatory language may preclude empathetic listening.  While respecting opponents’ positions could advance academic understandings of controversial issues, if the understanding remains in the academic world and cannot be translated to effective action (for example, legislative or political activity), then persons on both sides of an issue would wonder about the relevance of the time-consuming effort required to engage in Rogerian argumentation.  Finally, reaching consensus may be stymied if it is perceived as compromise, and activists on both sides of, not merely abortion, but all three of the controversial life issues may find this common political imperative unconscionable.

          Some of the objections raised in the above paragraph are evident in textbooks which advocate the Rogerian method, and it does not serve the rhetorical cause well if the exemplification of abortion as a controversial issue that could be addressed using Rogerian argumentation is itself flawed linguistically and rhetorically, as in the following passage from John D. Ramage, John C. Bean, and June Johnson’s Writing Arguments: A Rhetoric with Readings (9th ed., 2012):

[slide nineteen]  On issues such as abortion, gun control, gay rights, or the role of religion in the public sphere, the distance between a writer and a resistant audience can be so great that dialogue seems impossible.  In these cases the writer’s goal may be simply to open dialogue by seeking common ground—that is, by finding places where the writer and audience agree.  For example, pro-choice and pro-life advocates may never agree on a woman’s right to an abortion, but they may share common ground in wanting to reduce teenage pregnancy.  There is room, in other words, for conversation, if not for agreement.  (Ramage, Bean, and Johnson 135)

Using the phrase “pro-choice” could be viewed as an effort to be fair to those who support the killing of the unborn child throughout the nine months of pregnancy for any reason whatsoever.  The pro-life perspective, of course, would recoil at such a positive connotation of an inherently evil practice.  Similarly, the phrase “a woman’s right to choose” is a euphemism which would destroy any vestige of an effort to reach out to pro-lifers since killing an unborn child, harming his or her mother, and denying the rights of the father should not be categorized as anyone’s civil right.  If this phrase were used in a Rogerian effort to attract pro-lifers to discuss the first life issue of abortion, then it would be understandable if the pro-life contingent of such an effort boycotted the event.  Finally, the “common ground” that the editors of this textbook passage suggest of “wanting to reduce teenage pregnancy” is well-known in right-to-life circles as an argumentative trap, specifically a red herring, a logical fallacy which deflects attention away from the issue under discussion.  As current political history shows, when anti-life Democrats want to avoid the controversy surrounding their efforts to advance the killing of the unborn, they distract voters’ attention by discussing a “war on women” (not the one they make on unborn women or their mothers) or by saying that their political opponents (both Republicans and pro-life Democrats) are against contraception.

Analysis of Representative Websites

          Now that basic IT standards have been identified and major tenets of two methods of argumentation have been provided, reviewing the websites of the two most prominent abortion groups will conclude this presentation.  Two home pages and embedded pages concerning abortion will be considered, first from the anti-life Planned Parenthood and then from the pro-life National Right to Life Committee.  While it may seem as though this author is disparaging the Rogerian method of argumentation, it must be conceded that the method itself is a golden opportunity for pro-life activists to achieve several goals.  Certainly, anti-life activists can use Rogerian argumentation to try to accomplish their goals, but they have much more to lose since their rationale for the killing of the unborn, the handicapped newborn, and the elderly is not only fault-ridden, but also based on omission, if not censorship, of pro-life ideas.  What remains now is the analysis of the pages.

          [slide twenty]  If one visited the Planned Parenthood Federation of America website, one would delight in seeing a happy young woman encased in a comforting background of blue (or is she happy despite her surroundings being symbolized by a melancholic color?).  If the visitor were a person of color, then he or she would immediately identify with the young woman, who is either Latina or African American.  Since Planned Parenthood is known not only for birth control, but also for abortion, if one were accessing the website because he or she wanted abortion information, one would have difficulty in finding it; the word “abortion” is embedded in the right side of the screen in font smaller than the words “Health Center” which, apparently, are meant to draw the viewer’s attention.  One would wonder why “donate” is not only in a larger font, but also in all caps.  The perception created is that Planned Parenthood may be more concerned about money than it is in promoting, not its abortion clinics, but its “health centers.”

[slide twenty-one]  The home page scrolls between this slide of a young Latina/African-American woman and a second slide with two headless young white people (if the color of their hands is any indication), the young woman kicking up her left foot in the old-fashioned way of a young woman in love.  The website visitor may not perceive this anachronistic and patriarchal view of women’s sexuality since the key words on the second slide (“birth control”) may grab the viewer’s attention and may be presumably what the website viewer wants.  Besides that, the background (header and right side) is the same, so the lack of variation focuses the viewer to those words.

          Using the Rogerian method of argumentation, the pro-life visitor to the website could question why his or her perspective is not addressed; that is, the pro-lifer would wonder why abortion, which is such a paramount function of Planned Parenthood clinics, is not given more prominence.  The pro-lifer would also wonder why a young woman from a minority group is featured on one slide while the two headless young white people appear on the second slide, their privacy guaranteed by being faceless entities.  The pro-lifer could argue that a consensus has been reached that Planned Parenthood is more concerned with having minorities abort more than whites.  However, this is a conclusion which Planned Parenthood may not find suitable for public knowledge; after all, no organization wants to be known as a racist, eugenicist entity, even though Planned Parenthood’s founder, Margaret Sanger, was a well-known racist and eugenicist.

          The pro-lifer would further wonder why the abortion clinics for which Planned Parenthood is known are not referenced immediately on the first page.  However, using the Rogerian method, the pro-lifer would be able to reach another consensus with Planned Parenthood, that “abortion clinic” is too specific and precise a phrase for the name of the locations where the killings occur.  Granted, this point of consensus could lead to the conclusion that Planned Parenthood relies on euphemisms to carry out its abortion business; this conclusion reached by collaborative negotiation may therefore be suitable for both groups.  On second thought, Planned Parenthood may not want to abandon its euphemistic language, a well-established marketing tool that has helped to confuse mothers faced with difficult circumstances surrounding their babies’ lives, because profits may fall if mothers are told that such euphemisms hide the negative connotations of killing unborn children.

          Above all, the ambivalent and pro-life visitors “reading” these websites would be open to listening empathetically to the anti-life viewpoint, and such listening would help the ambivalent person and the pro-lifer to know Planned Parenthood’s apparent three concerns: 1. promoting minority abortions; 2. safeguarding the furtiveness of young whites seeking birth control; and 3. directing people to their “health centers”, a euphemism for abortion clinics.  While Planned Parenthood may not wish to have its website visitors receive these impressions, the website does generate significant progress in promoting an alternative view of the organization, since the common knowledge about Planned Parenthood is that it is a birth control organization and not one which has a eugenicist program using abortion as its main tool in its various business outlets (called “health centers” or simply “clinics”).

          [slide twenty-two]  The Rogerian method can be applied to Planned Parenthood’s embedded web page titled “Abortion” in the same manner.  Unfortunately, consensus may not be reached because anti-life organizations like Planned Parenthood are virulently hostile to any pro-life interpretation of their language.  For example, the caption at the top of the page can be challenged by pro-life activists on at least three grounds.  First, the idea that abortion is safe is immediately countered by accounts of mothers who have died from abortions; mentioning their deaths would not advance Planned Parenthood’s business functions.  Second, for public relations purposes, the legality of nine-month legalized abortion is rarely recognized by anti-life activists since the original 1973 abortion decisions, anti-lifers focusing only on the legality of first-trimester abortions, pro-lifers correctly emphasizing that the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion throughout the nine months of pregnancy for any reason whatsoever.  Finally, “end pregnancy” is rhetorically ambiguous, since pregnancy can end in childbirth, babies who are stillborn, and destructive abortion methods.  However, given these pro-life challenges of an alternative perspective, it is doubtful that Planned Parenthood would agree to alter its website to accommodate pro-life concerns about its rhetoric.

Furthermore, each of the highlighted words in subsequent paragraphs on this page can be further challenged with an alternative viewpoint.  The “two kinds” of abortion listed omit some of the more gruesome abortion methods, such as partial-birth abortion.  “Options” is a linguistic variation of “choice”, which was long a favorite term in the anti-life community, but one which obscures the moral dilemma which should obtain when a mother is thinking about killing her unborn child.  The language about “parental consent” makes it clear that unemancipated mothers can hope that a willing judge would void the application of any parental consent law which would stop her not only from aborting, but also possibly harming herself.  Finally, the use of “health center” deflects the reality of the abortion clinic as the site where unborn children are killed.

          [slide twenty-three]  If one visited the National Right to Life Committee website, in contrast to the relatively simplistic Planned Parenthood home page, one would be greeted with lots of white space which focus the viewer’s attention to, not two, but seven messages scrolling in seven rapid slides.  The white space increases the readability factor, and the range of eight tabs at the bottom of the header consolidates information where necessary.  The presence of the baby in the upper right corner may convey to an ambivalent person or anti-lifer coming to this home page that the National Right to Life Committee is concerned about white babies and may become confused on learning that infanticide and euthanasia are coequal life issues.  Landing on the slide mentioning the “Affordable Care Act” would disarm those who may support Obamacare and may encourage such viewers to stay on the web page for the remaining six slides, all of which scroll in rapid succession, probably to fulfill the standard that young Internet users do not stay on web pages for long intervals.

          [slide twenty-four]  The ambivalent or anti-life viewer would be surprised to see that none of the seven slides contains either graphic photos of aborted babies, or identifiably Catholic elements (graphic imagery and Roman Catholicism being two characteristics of an uneducated view of the right-to-life movement).  The National Right to Life Committee has three functions: educational, legislative, and political.  The educational intent of the organization is evident in the “Life at Risk” slide; the legislative intent is clear in the “Tobias Testifies”, “Affordable Health Care”, and “NRLC Commends” slides; and the political intent is indicated by the “Vote” slide.  That the legislative and political functions of Planned Parenthood are absent from its website (beyond, possibly, the ambiguous “Get Involved” notation) is a point of collaborative negotiation that could make it clear to the general public that Planned Parenthood is not merely a “service” or “health” organization as its website intimates.

The “Donate” slide (“donate” being in all caps and a large font) is identical to Planned Parenthood’s emphasis on raising funds, and this commonality could lead to Rogerian collaborative negotiation.  Unfortunately, while Planned Parenthood obtains tax funding and foundation grants which finance its abortion activities, the difference between both organizations’ use of funds could jeopardize reaching a consensus.  Planned Parenthood could argue, as the National Right to Life Committee does, that donations are needed for “our life-saving efforts”; it would be difficult for Planned Parenthood to argue that mothers’ lives are saved only because unborn children’s lives are destroyed, especially since the National Right to Life Committee aims to save both the unborn child and his or her mother.  [slide twenty-five]  The “Abortion Information” page embedded within the website may pose a problem for those accessing the page for information about clinics which perform abortions.  However, since the National Right to Life Committee has education as a top priority, the page reflects that intent: a hypertext brief history of abortion is provided with “Quick Facts” (the first being fetological information) occupying the right side of the page.

          Much more can be written about the rhetoric of anti- and pro-life websites, just as other services provided by anti- and pro-life organizations have developed beyond mere website presence and email lists to RSS feeds and instantaneous legislative action with links embedded within the emails and icons allowing users to transmit the legislative appeals to one’s connections through Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, or other services.  Further research is needed to determine the utility of these services in the cause of restoring protection of all human life.  Such research depends on more sophisticated activists who not only analyze Internet and social media services, but also produce life-affirming work within those services.  Medical technological advances in the late twentieth century allowed humanity to see the unborn child and to perceive that even the severely comatose have active brain activity identifiable by increasingly sophisticated instruments.  The generations of the twenty-first century have the privilege and opportunity to use IT technological advances to generate action to restore the first civil right to life to an even greater degree and to an even greater audience. [slide twenty-six]

Works Cited

“Abortion Information.” National Right to Life Committee. [2014.] Web. 29 Aug.


“Abortion.” Planned Parenthood Federation of America. 2014. Web. 29 Aug.


Bell, Mark. Build a Website for Free. Indianapolis: Que, 2009. Print.

Boyd, Danah. It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens. New

Haven: Yale UP, 2014. Print.

Fitzgerald, Drew. “Echoes of Y2K: Engineers Buzz That Internet Is Outgrowing

Its Gear Routers That Send Data Online Could Become Overloaded as Number of Internet Routes Hits ‘512K’.” Wall Street Journal, 13 Aug. 2014. Web. 14 Aug. 2014.

Koloze, Gregory. Message to the author. 6 Sept. 2014. Email.

Lloyd, Ian. Build Your Own Website the Right Way Using HTML & CSS. 3rd ed.

Collingwood, AU: SitePoint, 2011. Print.

Lynch, Patrick J., and Sarah Horton. “Page Design: Visual Design.” Web Style

Guide. 3rd ed. Web. 29 Aug. 2014.

MacDonald, Matthew. Creating a Web Site: The Missing Manual. 2nd ed.

Sebastopol, CA: O’Reilly Media, 2009. Print.

National Right to Life Committee. National Right to Life. 2014. Web. 29 Aug.


Oliver, Dick. Sams Teach Yourself HTML 4 in 24 Hours. 2014. Web. 15 Aug.

2014. <


Oliver, Dick, and Charles Ashbacher. Sams Teach Yourself HTML and XHTML in

24 Hours. 5th ed. Indianapolis: Sams, 2001. Print.

Planned Parenthood Federation of America. 2014. Web.

29 Aug. 2014.

Ramage, John D., John C. Bean, and June Johnson. Writing Arguments: A

Rhetoric with Readings. 9th ed. Boston: Pearson, 2012. Print.

Stewart, Jude. ROY G. BIV: An Exceedingly Surprising Book About Color. New

York: Bloomsbury, 2013. Print.

“Web Page Design.” Dictionary of Computer and Internet Terms. Eds. Douglas A.

Downing, Michael A. Covington, Melody Mauldin Covington, Catherine Anne Barrett, and Sharon Covington. 11th ed. Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s, 2013. Print.

[1] That the Internet “age” of the World Wide Web may be reaching a close was recently suggested by The Wall Street Journal.  According to Internet engineers, there are warning signs that the Internet may be approaching limits, specifically (from the article’s subheading) that “Routers That Send Data Online Could Become Overloaded as Number of Internet Routes Hits ‘512K’” (Fitzgerald).

[2] Although much can be written about color theory, a final word is necessary here.  Many critics still comment on the symbolism of colors; for example, Jude Stewart’s ROY G. BIV: An Exceedingly Surprising Book About Color (2013) examines cultural factors surrounding the red to violet continuum abbreviated by the capitalized main title.  While the symbolism of red as a color of passion, for example, certainly has marketing relevance, for purposes of this discussion, other factors identified by Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton in their online Web Style Guide (3rd ed., 2011) such as the hue, saturation levels, and brightness of colors may have more relevance for the design of websites.

[3] The author wishes to thank Gregory Koloze, Director of Services at GK HospITality Solutions, LLC, for providing trenchant commentary about Oliver’s recommendation for image size and modem speed.  His analysis of the items on slide ten of the PowerPoint accompanying the presentation is worth noting in full:

At first I was concerned about the information on slide 10’s table, referencing image size and a 28.8 modem.  Then I realized, to have a good webpage, you do need appropriate sizes because, in many parts of the world, high-speed internet isn’t available and dial-up and satellite connections are being used.  You wouldn’t want to lose viewers due to a bandwidth intensive webpage.  Likewise, you would not want to have a website too large to load for a teenager looking at Right to Life’s webpage while she has music sharing running in the background, her mother is watching Netflix, her brother is online gaming, and her father is using a VPN to do work at home, leaving RTL’s site barely loading and you lose her.  Long story short: it’s a good table to have, but at first glance someone might discount the credibility of the data unless he or she thinks about it or the reasoning for the recommendation is explained further.

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