Re: STC is broken

Subject: Re: STC is broken
From: Michael West <WestM -at- conwag -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Wed, 30 Apr 2008 17:27:59 +1000

Beth wrote:

> What other professions do you know of that have
> such a direct impact on
> daily life in so many industries,
> but where the public at large, not to
> mention those employing us, have so
> little concept of what we do? Our
> exact role in projects is supposed
> to be relatively transparent to the
> user, but our presence in the workforce
> should not be.

Beth always makes a good deal of sense around here, but I don't think I
agree with this. Perhaps I should say rather that my own experience
(covering over 2 decades in tech comms now) doesn't really accord with
hers. I think I've had only one or two jobs (out of at least ten) where I
felt unrecognised or unappreciated as a contributer to the success of the
enterprise. (And it sure is an awful feeling!)

I don't see how STC as an organization could possibly win "recognition"
for tech communicators. We have to carry this torch ourselves,
individually. At best, an org like STC can provide a local forum for
exchanging ideas and technical understanding, or for "networking" if one
is inclined toward that sort of thing.

I'd submit that the usefulness of STC as a communications forum has been
largely superceded by the Internet. But I've had a low opinion of the
national organization since the 1980s, when it had one of the dullest,
ugliest and worst-edited journals ever to clutter my mailbox.

Mike West
Melbourne, Australia


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