SUMMARY: Lamination, friend or foe?

Subject: SUMMARY: Lamination, friend or foe?
From: "Mark L. Levinson" <markl -at- gilian -dot- com>
To: TechWr-L <TECHWR-L -at- LISTS -dot- RAYCOMM -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 09 Apr 2000 13:18:25 +0300

Techwr-l is a wondrous thing. I had no idea so many people all
over the world disagreed with me.

Maybe it's my background. In my youth I worked two summers wielding
a rubber stamp at a library, and I developed a permanent resentment
toward publications that wouldn't stay clearly stamped. Anyway, in
response to my query about laminated manuals, there was no one to
say "Damn right, the user should be able to prominently sign or
inkstamp a manual right there on the cover."

I did get the e-mail equivalent of a raised eyebrow regarding the
whole idea of laminating a manual, and I realized I had echoed an
erroneous term. Our graphic designer calls it lamination, but it's
not the sticking-on of a plastic sheet, it's just a coat of varnish
from the printshop.

And I got suggestions about how else a user could mark a manual:
by writing with a special kind of marker, or inside the cover, or
on the exposed edge of the pages, or on an adhesive label.

Carolyn Davidson wrote: "We attach a 'peel-and-stick' business
card holder to the front cover of each of our policy and procedure
manuals so that employees can temporarily identify a binder as
'theirs' without permanently defacing it." Nice, but our manuals
aren't massive enough to accommodate a business-card holder
gracefully... nor, from a properly paranoid point of view, can
such a device preserve proof of ownership.

Lynn Guess wrote, "Most manuals that I have done in the past ten
years have had a place on the front cover to write in the model
and serial number of the machine," but not even she champions
personalized exterior identification.

I regret only that it is too late for me to propose a
conseciousness-raising lecture at the STC convention on "the
documentation owner identification system as an element of
customer satisfaction."

Mark L. Levinson - markl -at- gilian -dot- com - Herzlia, Israel

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