Re: Validating documentation

Subject: Re: Validating documentation
From: Bruce Byfield <bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 23 Mar 2002 18:59:26 -0800

Andrew Plato wrote:

Since technical writers are supposed to own their documents and be responsible
for the content, any error in the document would therefore be something for the
writer to correct. It is not the engineers or QA's fault that a technical
writer placed the wrong (misleading, incomplete, etc.) content into a document.
QA and SME's are there to catch errors. It is the writer's job to repair them
or make sure they are not there in the first place.
Yes and no.

If a writer suddenly starts complaining about lack of cooperation when asked why the docs are wrong or when late, then I have little sympathy. The odds are that the writer is making an excuse. Probably, the writer either doesn't understand the material, or has been hiding some ongoing communication problems that should have been solved long before the matter reached a crisis.

However, if the writer has been having trouble getting cooperation throughout the project, and has either kept a record of the problem or (better yet) kept his or her supervisor informed of the problem, that's another matter. It also depends on how firm the code freeze has been. If the product suffers from feature creep, especially at the last moment, then realistically the writer probably needs extra time to accomodate changes.

Bruce Byfield 604.421.7177 bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com

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Re: Validating documentation: From: Andrew Plato

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