Re: Post-holiday reality: RE-THREAD?

Subject: Re: Post-holiday reality: RE-THREAD?
From: Marilynne Smith <marilyns -at- qualcomm -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 02 Jan 2001 11:55:57 -0800

My new car has a manual where the writer (or someone in legal) wanted to be sure I was safe. Every possible warning is in there. It's hard to find the material I want to read and when I find it, it often isn't clear or complete enough. At first I laughed. Then I became annoyed. Do I need that much detail about dangers or do I want more detail on which of the 6 radios discussed in the book is the one I own? I need to know what oil to put in and how much gas the tank holds. Instead, I am treated to more warnings and cautions I ever thought possible, relatively few connected to driving the vehicle down the road.

Guess I should copy Chevy on this one. 8-)


At 09:39 PM 1/1/01 -0500, you wrote:

In a message dated 12/29/00 4:06:41 AM Eastern Standard Time,
sharon -at- sintecmedia -dot- com writes:

<< wonder, do automotive manufacturers rely on tech writers to write
> owners'
> manuals? >>
Yes, they do. They hire the CHEAPEST contract house in the Detroit area to
do most of them. I have friend who worked on them - for that company. The
REALLY GOOD writers work on the stuff for the engineers and mechanics. Face
it, most people don't read the owners manual to a car - but they do read the
repair manual if they are a mechanic.

Another thing to note, the Auto industry is EXTREMELY gun shy about legal
ramifications to anything that comes from them. The legal department has the
LAST WORD for every document that goes out to a customer


Melissa L. Owsley
(I don't work for the auto companies because they are among the worst paying
groups in Detroit for Tech Writers.)

~!~ ~!~ ~!~ ~!~ ~!~ ~!~ ~!~
Marilynne Smith
Sr. Technical Writer
marilyns -at- qualcomm -dot- com
(858) 651-6664

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