RE: Hostility towards STC

Subject: RE: Hostility towards STC
From: "Mark Baker" <mbaker -at- ca -dot- stilo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2003 16:46:41 -0400

> To do it well there is a specific body of knowledge, complemented
> by a huge variety of areas of expertise:

True, but that body of knowledge is the body of knowledge that should be
common to every educated person. And none of those complementary areas of
expertise are common to all technical writers.

> Audience analysis

Know who you are talking to -- a skill proper to every educated person.

> Oral Communication skills

Every educated person

> Written Communications skills

Every educated person

> Design and visual arts

Not all technical writers

> Persuasion

Every educated person

> Training and User Support

Not all technical writers


Don't know what that is, so I suspect not all technical writers

> Negotiation for Information

Every educated person

> Information Analysis

Every educated person

Look, an occupation is not inherently inferior to a profession. The
distinction is a practical one, not one of degree. Most of us work in
occupations, some of them challenging, some of them less so. People who work
in professions require a specific body of knowledge that applies only to
their profession. This changes how they are trained and qualified. It does
not change their worth as human beings, nor does it necessarily confer
greater social status or financial reward. It is simply a characteristic of
the type of work they do.

It is ridiculous to try to promote an ordinary occupation to a profession
simply in an attempt to increase your own status. Either there is a
substantial body of specialized knowledge or there isn't. If there is, you
have a profession. If not, you don't. And in the case of technical
communication, we don't.
Mark Baker
Senior Technical Writer
Stilo Corporation
1900 City Park Drive, Suite 504 , Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1J 1A3
Phone: 613-745-4242, Fax: 613-745-5560
Email mbaker -at- ca -dot- stilo -dot- com

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RE: Hostility towards STC: From: Giordano, Connie

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