On websites and webforums I often see sentences like:

"I wrote a post/entry/passage/message for [website]"

In the context, it means that they submitted a section of text to the website for publication. But what is the difference between them? Are they interchangeable?

  • 1
    Could you be more specific with your question? I don't currently see a doubt that a dictionary couldn't help with. – JMB Mar 31 '14 at 12:13
  • Specifically, the differences between those particular nouns relate to the intended audience. – Jolenealaska Mar 31 '14 at 12:53

A post is something you put up for others to see. The meaning does not imply that it is part of a larger context or a reply to anything. As such, a "post" typically is the start of a conversation or a stand-alone article. Often this is a blog post or something similar.

An entry is something you add to some larger context. You can add an entry to an ongoing journal, for example. The implication here is that what you've added is a single part of a larger collection.

A passage is a bit of prose, usually no more than a few paragraphs. It is often the bit of text covering a single idea excerpted from a larger essay. This word is most commonly used to describe text read or copied elsewhere rather than some original writing, as in "The teacher then read a passage from Don Quixote to illustrate his point." You rarely see this word used to describe something you'd post online.

A message is something sent to someone. The word implies that it has an intended recipient. In an online context, this is usually direct communication between two people, such as you'd see with SMS texting.

Ordered by how frequently these collocations are used:

  1. write a message

    This is the most common use, probably because it also has the broadest application, since it doesn't specify the means by which or the purpose for which the message is communicated.

  2. write an entry

    Next in frequency of use is "write an entry". In this case, we are saying something about the purpose of what we write. An entry is meant to be part of a list, be it a diary, a dictionary, a weblog (blog)...

  3. write a post

    I believe the collocation "write a post" is a recent addition to the language and it's only used for entries of a web site (often a blog) or a mailing list (I'm sure I'll be corrected in the comments if this is not the case).

  4. write a passage

    In this case "passage" is an extract from a larger text (a book, a poem, a song...). We can "quote or recite a passage", you can discuss the literary figures that a writer used to "write a passage", or you can be asked to "write a passage on something". All these uses have in common that the text being written is considered to be incomplete or part of a larger text.

Being an SEO content writer for websites and blogs, I think I can answer this!

There's some difference between them

I write a post - a post is a general term used for anything today. A blog, article, webpage, review or the like. Though, typically, a post is a blog. In fact, many times, it's refer to as a 'blog post' If you have a wordpress set up for a blog, you'll write a 'post' which means it's a blog. If you write a post on the website, it generally refers to as an article. If you have a wordpress setup for a website, (we have this) 'post' can also mean a webpage!

I'll write an entry - it has several meanings right from something written for a record to manuscript and the like.

I'll write a passage - you'll write some section especially of a medium length (around 250-350 words?)

I'll write a message - a message is a message and it could be a reply/respond (to a comment?), a promotional offer through a catchy message/tagline or things the like.

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