Re: Hostility towards STC

Subject: Re: Hostility towards STC
From: kcronin -at- daleen -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2003 19:47:38 -0600

Bruce wrote a lot of good, well-thought-out stuff, including:

> Really, it's not the mechanics that are the problems. To me, the issues are:
> - Is certification desirable?
> - Can writers be organized to achieve certification?
> - What body should be in charge of certification?
> My own answers to these questions are
> - Yes/No/Maybe; ask me on alternate days and you'll get different answers.
> - Probably not. I'd rather try herding parrots (which is exactly 7.85
> times harder than herding cats, which is 12.43 times harder than getting
> drunken Canadians out of a swimming pool)
> - Definitely not the STC. It seems incapable of mustering such a large
> effort.

I just don't see the point of non-industry-specific certification.

I think our own skills and ambitions do a nice job of dictating what kind
of jobs we can get, and how far we go - at least that's been my
observation thus far. And if we can't cut it, we find out about it -
nobody is shy about firing tech writers. :(

Bottom line: my observations thus far lead me to believe that tech writing
is treated as a meritocracy. The better you are and/or the more you make
your employer happy, the more successful you are. I like that.

Yes, we could put students through the wringer and make them learn a wide
base of skills. But many of those skills will become outdated within
years. So I'm happy with the status quo.

I'm probably prejudiced. Tech writing saved my life, BECAUSE I was able to
enter into the job without a specific pedigree. So I guess I'll always be
thankful for that, and defensive of that aspect of the profession: tech
writing will let *anybody* in.

But once you get in, you gotta be *good* to STAY in. :)

-Keith Cronin
certified beer taste tester

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