Re: Honestly -- when an SME completely REWRITES your text ... GEEZ!

Subject: Re: Honestly -- when an SME completely REWRITES your text ... GEEZ!
From: Janice Gelb <Janice -dot- Gelb -at- Sun -dot- COM>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Wed, 22 Oct 2008 07:32:01 +1100

Doug Cuff wrote:
>> The reason it got me upset was that, by just rewriting the passage
>> himself, as opposed to telling me what needed to be corrected, he seemed
>> to be saying, "You're making such a mess of this that I don't think
>> you're capable of understanding what the problem is, so I'm just going
>> to have to do it for you."
> I still get the impression it says, "I am able to express my own thoughts in my own writing but am
> unable to edit someone else's writing."
> People with skills sometimes forget that not everyone possesses them, not even to a small degree.
> It took me awhile to realize that not everyone can do what I do--I guess partly because I endured
> so many years of people assuming that they could.

I don't think that the SME's task was to edit
the author's writing. The task was to note and
possibly correct the technical content of the
information. Saying "This is confusing/doesn't
include this necessary information/is technically
incorrect" does not require editing or writing

While I probably would rather get a rewrite than
a useless question mark at the side of the page,
as I've seen in the past, I still think that it's
not unreasonable for the writer to want to tactfully
let the SME know that for future reviews, the most
efficient solution is for the SME to indicate what's
wrong rather than rewriting it. The SME probably
thinks that providing new text is helpful and perhaps
would be grateful to learn that all that is expected
is an indication of what needs to be changed to make
the text technically accurate.

-- Janice

Janice Gelb | The only connection Sun has with
janice -dot- gelb -at- sun -dot- com | this message is the return address

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RE: Honestly -- when an SME completely REWRITES your text ... GEEZ!: From: Doug Cuff

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