The Deletionist

Tuesday 18 June 2013, 9:41 pm   //////  

The Deletionist I’m pleased to announce the release of a project that I’ve been working on with Amaranth Borsuk and Jesper Juul for the past two years: The Deletionist. This is a bookmarklet (easily added to the bookmark bar in one’s browser) that automatically creates erasure poetry from any page on the World Wide Web, revealing an alterate mesh of texts called the Worl. Amaranth and I presented The Deletionist for the first time today at E-Poetry in London, at Kingston University.


  1. I tried it on and it seems to produce only half-words, most of them “ti”, “re”, “so”, “mi”. Is it supposed to break up words like that, or is it a bug?

    Comment by Ori Avtalion — 2013-06-19 @ 8:17 am
  2. The Deletionist does erase individual letters (among other things), and does so in dozens of ways besides this one. To figure out how to pronounce the words that you see result there, you could take a look at:

    Comment by Nick Montfort — 2013-06-19 @ 8:35 am
  3. Oh, I should have figured it out. I speak Hebrew and, in Israel, this is how notes are called.

    So am I expected to pronounce them in the correct pitch as well? Does it try to produce “interesting” (non-white-noise) music?

    Comment by Ori Avtalion — 2013-06-19 @ 4:11 pm
  4. Ori, please try The Deletionist on a Hebrew page and tell me what you think. It is supposed to do something interesting, although the behavior is not as complex as with English.

    As for the output you saw, I certainly can’t sing the result, but I aspire to be able to one day!

    Comment by Nick Montfort — 2013-06-19 @ 9:12 pm
  5. Hebrew pages seem to work fine. It may take a few attempts on different texts before you get something readable.

    Comment by Ori Avtalion — 2013-06-20 @ 4:17 pm
  6. […] The Deletionist is a browser bookmarklet tht dlts thgs. […]

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