Re: Maybe We (Don't) Need a New Job Title

Subject: Re: Maybe We (Don't) Need a New Job Title
From: "Marc A. Santacroce" <epubs -at- ricochet -dot- net>
To: Karen Field <kfield -at- STELLCOM -dot- com>, "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 11 Apr 2000 07:50:14 -0700

Karen, I'm with you. I just returned from a Silicon valley job fair. All the TW jobs (hundreds of them) were in fact looking for Technical Writers. Doesn't this reek a little of Ed Norton (the Honeymooners) calling himself a sanitation engineer?


Can we please please PLEASE stop this nonsense about job titles? I am a
technical writer. On my more flamboyant days, I call myself a technical
communicator, but only to embrace the skills of my job that are not directly
related to writing, such as informal usability testing and layout design. I
have no idea what an "information architect" is, except to guess that the
person who calls him-/herself that has too much time on the hands and an
inferiority complex. To give our jobs seemingly vague and complex titles
does a disservice to those outside our profession as well as ourselves. Many
of us are in the business of taking technical information and putting it in
layperson's terms. Why on EARTH must we do the opposite with our job titles?
As I've said on this before, when I tell people outside the world of
software that I'm a technical writer I get plenty of blank stares, which I
oblige with a few words about what I really do. I can't imagine the response
I'd get when I tell someone that I'm an "information developer." Likewise,
if I insist that my manager call me something like "Information Analyst,"
I'd expect to hear laughter. My bosses get enough correction from
programmers--who really ARE programmers in the sense that all they do is
write code--who want to be called "software developers."

Have a wonderful day, everyone.

Karen Field
Sr. Technical Writer
Stellcom, Inc.
kfield at stellcom dot com

Marc A. Santacroce
Senior Technical Writer,
ePubs, Inc.

I love it here;
..there's no where I'd rather be,
.....there's nothing I'd rather be doing,
........and no one I'd rather be doing it with.

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