RE: Funny Tech Writing--copywriters? risky?

Subject: RE: Funny Tech Writing--copywriters? risky?
From: "Sella Rush" <srush -at- MusicNet -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 19 Sep 2002 15:12:47 -0700

Funny, I assumed the writer was the "instruction manual/layout" person, who was also a guy, not the copywriters.

I think humor is a purely "know your audience" issue, mundane as that might sound. In this case we have a guide that's primary goal is to make sure people feel good about their purchase, make them feel like the product is something they can use effectively, that it's not hard to manage, and most importantly that they'd buy again when a bus runs over the first one.

There's a big difference between what this writing is trying to accomplish and what a nuclear waste dump manual, or even most work-based instructional material is doing.

BTW--I think "risky" is an interesting term to use when describing why not to use humor. Of all the ways we choose to write technical information, humor is nowhere near the most "risky", although I think that depends on what we're afraid of. If we're afraid that people won't like us, won't think we're funny, then, yes, I guess actually trying to be funny is risky. If, however, we're afraid people won't read our work or won't understand it when they do, then dry, boring, badly organized writing is way more risky.

Sella Rush
(who is looking at the world through newly lasered eyes, 20/20 for the first time in 29 years)

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