RE: Grammar Q

Subject: RE: Grammar Q
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: "Craig Haiss" <craighaiss -at- yahoo -dot- com>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2008 10:49:55 -0500

On Behalf Of Craig Haiss expressed:
[...]
> The use of passive voice instead of "you" is simply
> less accurate. With "you" there is less room for
> misunderstanding. If our job is to be as clear and
> accurate as possible, why leave it up to the reader to
> assume who should be performing the steps in the
> procedure?

I'm with you so far...

> It's nice to know something "can be" done,
> but does that mean that I'm supposed to do it, or does
> the product do it for me?

Here, not so much. I have no problem saying something "can" be done, if
I'm talking about something that is optional. It doesn't matter who does
it, IF they do it, or (perhaps) even when they do it.
But, if some action is necessary to the task/process, then it should not
be left to chance. Somebody must be told to do it. If that somebody is
not the person who is following the immediate set of steps, then the
immediate set of steps should at least tell that person that they _must_
get someone else to perform the other necessary action. "Ensure that
your network administrator has set up DNS for this appliance, and verify
that the DNS changes have propagated in your network before you proceed
to the next step, 'Creating DNS-based cert."

Kevin
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References:
Re: Grammar Q: From: Janice Gelb
Re: Grammar Q: From: Craig Haiss

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