fwd: you or he/it

Subject: fwd: you or he/it
From: "Anonymous Poster" <techwhirlanonpost -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: techwhirlers <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2006 08:01:18 -0500

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Hello group,

I'm in the midst of a (major) disagreement at my place of employment.
Since beginning my career as a Technical Writer, I've had it pounded
into me that we are to use the "you", eliminate "it/he/she", keep it
informal and to the point, and use present tense WHENEVER possible.
Make it simple and easy to follow.

We now have a new Japanese Project Leader who wishes me to create a
completely new, FORMAL format, eliminating you, sprinkling it/he
liberally, and generally, creating a document that (in my opinion
only) would be very difficult to read through, especially for our
Target Audience. (Admininstrative IT personnel)

What I'm asking for is your collective opinion about this. Do you have
background in this within your own company? What did you do? I'm
searching on the internet for examples, pulling out all my books,
getting everything together to show that the style we use is a common
practice in the Industry, and not a flash in the pan. Even if you use
another style, could you tell me about that?

I would appreciate any help. Most of our customers do not read the
documents anyway (fact of life), but I don't want to turn off the few
that do. OH, let me add, we are in Europe, so most readers are ESL
(English as a Second Language).

Many, many thanks.

The Beleaguered Tech Writer

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