Re: Are you a writer?

Subject: Re: Are you a writer?
From: David_Slonosky -at- i2 -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 27 Feb 2002 14:28:03 -0500

> Why? Developers are paid to use their knowledge, not communicate it.

What? So, developers who don't communicate their knowledge are of equal
value to a company as those who do communicate? In other words, in a
hypothetical job interview situation between a silent developer and one
who could communicate, with all other variables equal, the recruiter could
flip a coin and be confident he/she was making the right choice for the

That seems like a double standard. Tech writers, to be valid, must become
SMEs in their own right, but developers can behave any way they please as
long as they pump out the bug-free code. To be fair, this might have been
the attitude several years ago, but I think most good companies are
beginning to realize that the social skills are important parts in the
valuable employee skill set.

And I don't disagree with the proposal that tech writers must know the
subject matter. I only object with the notion that knowledge can only be
expressed as a boolean variable, either your knowledge = 0 or your
knowledge = 1. Tech writers should be seeking to increase their knowledge
from day one on a project, but to suggest that if you're thrust into a
situation where you are partially editing and partially adding new
material you are no longer a writer doesn't sit well with me.


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