RE: Author Credit

Subject: RE: Author Credit
From: "Susan Jelus" <susan -dot- jelus -at- daytonrcs -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 17 Jul 2002 10:31:39 -0400

We have recently started listing the contributors to a document under an
"Acknowledgements" heading in the front matter. Here's an example:

Research Computer Services would like to acknowledge the people who
contributed to this publication. They are:
Price System Subject Matter Expert: S Lothe
Credit System Subject Matter Expert: D Lange
Technical Writer and Editor: S Jelus

It helps create a sense of teamwork, ownership, and accountability for the
developers/SME's, who can sometimes be disinterested in the documentation
and reluctant to divulge what they know. Besides, why shouldn't people get
credit for their work? Should we only acknowledge the authors of newspaper
columns and novels? (I know my software technical documents often feel like
novels by the time I'm done with them.)

Giving author credit makes people feel good about their work. And it
doesn't cost as much as a bonus. It also supplies a human contact if
someone needs more information or finds a mistake.

I've been asked to add this information to our html help as well. I'm not
sure exactly how I'll do that, since it doesn't really have front matter.
Does anyone have any ideas about that?

I'm on the digest.

Susan Jelus
Research Computer Services, Inc. (a subsidiary of NCR)
Dayton, Ohio USA

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