RE: STC is broken

Subject: RE: STC is broken
From: "Lauren" <lauren -at- writeco -dot- net>
To: "'Bill Swallow'" <techcommdood -at- gmail -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2008 12:18:03 -0700

> From: Bill Swallow

> > I like the idea of a Technical Writers Guild. Call it TWG
> or "twig." Like,
> > a twig in the tree of information.
> I like the idea of a muscular V-16 DOHC too, but is it practical? ;-)

Sounds like it might be too racy for technical writing.

> So what about a guild strikes your fancy, specifically?

Well, for starters, the acronym. Second, I like the idea of organized
gathering and sharing of information about the methodology of the

Arguments (I think from you) that an organized group like this could not
succeed because we would never agree on things like the serial comma. I
might be paraphrasing excessively, but I think I got the argument.

I disagree because I think that it would not be necessary for a guild or an
association to agree on specific conventions, but that the group would agree
that conventions should be adopted in a particular organization and used

I think that organizations like Project Management Institute (PMI) for
project management and the assorted engineering associations are good
examples of organizations that develop professional standards. For example,
PMI members meet and discuss project management methodology. A consensus of
methods that work and agreements to terminology evolve from these meetings.
The most common and widely accepted methods are adopted in the Project
Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK). Project managers are not required to
follow the PMBOK, but the PMBOK is a resource that is beneficial to project
management. Additionally, having standards, such as those in the PMBOK, can
help project managers communicate with other project managers. So, from a
functional level, a guild or other organization can help centralize and
communicate knowledge.

Other benefits include the concept of safety in numbers. An organized group
of people are more effective at implementing global change than are several
individuals. Some changes implemented by unions include those that address
pay, working conditions, and work hours. A union may be too excessive for
technical writers, but the range of effectiveness between having no
organization and having an influential organization is seen when we discuss
the full extent of possibilities. Personally, I think that _some_
organization is a good idea for the sharing of information and for the
development of a professional methodology.



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Re: STC is broken: From: Bill Swallow

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