Re: Studies relating to documentation density and getting the user toread the manuals

Subject: Re: Studies relating to documentation density and getting the user toread the manuals
From: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2009 08:43:31 -0800

Most users don't read their docs because they
know they can call tech support and have
someone else look up the information for them.

I once worked with a small company (not named
because as far as I know they're still doing this)
where we dealt with users not reading the docs
(we're talking about people who often called us
because they didn't know they were supposed
to defrag their hard drives periodically) by putting
a blurb in the sales and warranty material that
said tech support was free for one year, after
which they would need a "support contract," and
the free support countdown clock started with
their first call to tech support. In reality the
company had no desire to charge for support
and didn't even have a process in place to write
"support contracts," but simply telling people they
had a year of free support that started expiring
with their first call resulted in a substantial drop
in calls from people who just needed to do things
like defrag their hard drives.

Gene Kim-Eng


----- Original Message -----
From: "Leonard C. Porrello" <Leonard -dot- Porrello -at- SoleraTec -dot- com>
>I don't have any studies to back you up, but my thinking is along the
> same lines as yours. If people aren't using it, it probably needs to
> be
> made more simple, not more complex. It would be interesting if you
> could
> survey users to understand why they don't use the current docs.

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References:
Studies relating to documentation density and getting the user to read the manuals: From: The Documentation Doctor
RE: Studies relating to documentation density and getting the user to read the manuals: From: Leonard C. Porrello

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