Re: YOU are responsible, even when YOU are not to blame

Subject: Re: YOU are responsible, even when YOU are not to blame
From: Andrew Plato <gilliankitty -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 9 Apr 2003 10:07:16 -0700 (PDT)


"Jan Henning" wrote ...

> Rubbish. It has been repeatedly pointed out that, e.g., if a product
> changes after the documentation has to be finished, the inaccuracy is
> not the responsibility of the writer. (Unless of course he or she was
> also hired as a clairvoyant.)

...and its been repeatedly explained that there is a difference between fault
and responsibility. What you are describing is fault, Jan. Even if the writer
was not at fault for the error, does not relieve him/her of responsibility.

So there is a error after the docs are done. If you wrote the docs, you're
still responsible for fixing it.

In contrast, you (Jan) seem determined to support those who would point fingers
and whine about how they aren't at fault when such a error is discovered, which
is utterly unprofessional behavior.

> Furthermore, I do not think that anybody has argued that a writer has
> no responsibility for the contents of their documents. It has only been
> pointed out that there are limits beyond which the responsibility
> reasonably must rest with others.

Yes, and those limits are closely tied to the level of professionalism a writer
assumes. The more a writer whines and/or sees him/herself as a pawn, the more
likely his/her responsibilities will be limited and offloaded to other people.
A reliable, self-directed writer who needs minimal supervision will take
complete responsibility for his/her work and as such earn greater respect.

<remaining meta-argument ignored>

Andrew Plato

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