Re: Educational areas to pursue

Subject: Re: Educational areas to pursue
From: Paul DuBois <paul -at- kitebird -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 25 Feb 2003 11:17:47 -0600


On Tue, Feb 25, 2003 at 08:56:39AM -0800, Andrew Plato wrote:
> > > It would however be hard and I realize this would take many writers away
> > from
> > > there beloved tasks of fondling fonts, twisting templates, and masticating
> > > methodologies.

> > Um, that's an unnecessary and irrelevant shot. It detracts from your
> > argument by making it look as though it needs to be bolstered through
> > the addition of ridicule.

> It bookends my motivations for my argument. It also opens the door to the other
> side of the argument. If a writer rejects technical training, what are they
> embracing? Usually one-off work of marginal value.

It doesn't bookend anything, because you're making too many assumptions
about the object of your ridicule. You don't know that because someone
doesn't want to become a programmer that they must therefore be a crummy
writer.

I'll give you an example. I once worked a project that required that I
write about Windows. I don't like Windows, but I had to learn stuff about
it I didn't know in order to complete the project. Did that increase my
technical competence about Windows? Of course. Did I like learning about
it? No. The more I know about Windows, the more I *don't* like it.
But my desire to avoid Windows has nothing to do with my general competence
as a writer. If you were to come along and say that my reluctance about
Windows means I must be a font fondler, I would reject your argument.

> > Are these classes on company time, or on my time? If they're on my time,
> > is it unreasonable to expect to be paid for that time?

> No it isn't. First off, I have never heard of a company paying time for
> attending classes. Second, YOU are getting something out of this in the end.

> If a company pays for you to attend a MySQL course, and you go after work. You
> get to keep those MySQL skills after you depart the company. In fact many
> people do just that. They drill their employer for education and then take off
> the minute they get it. The company has then laid out $$$ for your education
> but does not get the benefit from it.

> I see this as another one of the "I want my cake, I want to eat it, and I want
> you to pay me to eat it too" type arguments. If an employer pays for your
> education, it is absurd to think they are going to also pay your time to attend
> those courses.

I see why you might say that. However, I don't believe I was making
quite that argument. I thought I was proposing the weird and unusual
position that an employer does not own my entire life.

You seem to be advancing the argument that it's just fine for an employer
to demand control over your time, at any time. I'm a bit reluctant to
agree with that.

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Follow-Ups:

References:
Re: Educational areas to pursue: From: Paul DuBois
Re: Educational areas to pursue: From: Andrew Plato

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