RE: Future Tense Controversy

Subject: RE: Future Tense Controversy
From: "Bill Swallow" <wswallow -at- nycap -dot- rr -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 12 Mar 2004 01:43:44 -0500

They aren't paid to be technical writers, and you aren't paid to be lawyers.
If they have definitive proof they are correct, by all means take their
advice. But, if they can't back it up, kindly ask them to leave the
technical writing to the experts.

Bill Swallow
wswallow "at" nycap "dot" rr "dot" com

::: -----Original Message-----
::: Our department writes training manuals, IS user manuals, and company
::: policies and procedures. We have always written these in
::: present tense,
::: active voice. The lawyers are now wanting us to write
::: everything in future
::: tense (and thus putting it in passive voice).
::: Needless to say, the writers are not happy with this new
::: edict, as we
::: believe that present tense and active voice should always be used in
::: technical writing. The lawyers are saying what we do is not
::: 'technical
::: writing'! My question is, can any of you direct me to
::: sources regarding
::: what is and what is not considered 'technical writing' and
::: also sources
::: that define rules for using present and future tense in
::: technical writing.


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