RE: Tech writing saves journalism

Subject: RE: Tech writing saves journalism
From: "Dan Goldstein" <DGoldstein -at- riverainmedical -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 25 May 2006 15:09:41 -0400

Last year, Dan Rather said:

"Be respectful, be polite, but ask the question. Just ask the damn
question. What kind of reporter are you if you don't press the

I have that quote on my bulletin board. It's served me well in tech
writing, quality assurance, regulatory affairs -- you name it.

Maybe Dan Rather failed because he didn't press the questions. But it's
still a message for us, even if the messenger forgot it.

-- Dan Goldstein

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Fetzner, Bill
> Sent: Thursday, May 25, 2006 2:35 PM
> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Tech writing saves journalism
> To bring this back to the main focus of this list, technical
> writing, could we make such a statement about technical
> writers today? Let's suppose that there's a parallel
> between "the media" and the body of profession writers,
> like those on this list, who are in the forefront of their
> respective fields. If it's true that many professional
> journalists have lost their truthful, balanced way, is
> there any evidence of that level of disregard among
> professional technical writers? Is it fair to blame readers
> for poor writing or for lowered standards of professional
> conduct? Should technical writing be taught in J-schools
> to raise the standards and practices?

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