RE: WRONG!..... -ish?

Subject: RE: WRONG!..... -ish?
From: "Porrello, Leonard" <lporrello -at- illumina -dot- com>
To: "'Cardimon, Craig'" <ccardimon -at- M-S-G -dot- com>, 'David Harrison' <dharrison -at- moldmasters -dot- com>, 'Dan Goldstein' <DGoldstein -at- riveraintech -dot- com>, "'techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 3 Feb 2012 17:12:17 +0000

I find the appeal to corporate authority interesting, but I am not convinced. I try to keep my documentation as exclusively focused as possible on the user, the process, and the artifact being documented. In "We recommend," you add the opinion of the company as a fourth element. I don't think a reader will be devastated or confused by this. However, I don't think it is necessary in most cases. A case in which I do see a need to insert the manufacturer is when you need to limit liability.

Craig said, "'It is best to' still sounds wishy-washy." In the context of a recommendation being made in a user guide, I don't see it. In addition, you can say "best" with confidence and authority. For example, "It is best to avoid eating rotten food." Does this mean that you should never eat rotten food or that avoiding rotten food is always the best thing to do? No, the statement leaves room for a response to mitigating circumstances. It is arguably better to eat some types of rotten food than it is to starve, and I don't think that anyone who reads "it is best to avoid eating rotten food" is going to think, "But what if I am starving?"

David said, "'we recommend' is read as a suggestion from the supplier or manufacturer and not the writer or speaker." I took that as a given.


-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+lporrello=illumina -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+lporrello=illumina -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of Cardimon, Craig
Sent: Friday, February 03, 2012 8:25 AM
To: 'David Harrison'; 'Dan Goldstein'; 'techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com'
Subject: RE: WRONG!..... -ish?

Meh. "It is best to" still sounds wishy-washy.

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+ccardimon=m-s-g -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+ccardimon=m-s-g -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of David Harrison
Sent: vendredi 3 février 2012 11:24
To: Dan Goldstein; techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: WRONG!..... -ish?

I support Dan

For surely, "we recommend" is read as a suggestion from the supplier or manufacturer and not the writer or speaker.
Furthermore, can you emphatically state, with all confidence, that "It is BEST that ???" Isn't that authoritative?

PS. does anyone know the commercial about a beer which is "probably the best in the world?" I love that word "probably" - wiggles you out of all sorts of litigation.



______________________________________________________________________
David Harrison |
Mold-Masters (UK) Limited | Global Hot Runner and Temperature Control Technology Netherwood Road | Rotherwas Ind. Est.
Hereford | HR2 6JU | United Kingdom | Company Registration Number: 1912861
Tel: +44 (0) 1432 265 768 | Fax: +44 (0) 1432 263 782 mailto:dharrison -at- moldmasters -dot- com | www.moldmasters.com

______________________________________________________________________
Sent on 03.02.2012 17:23 by David Harrison

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+dharrison=moldmasters -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+dharrison=moldmasters -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of Dan Goldstein
Sent: 03 February 2012 15:53
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: WRONG!..... -ish?

Yes, when it comes to our products, we do feel that we have a certain knowledgeable authority. Having said that, we recognize the difference between a required action and a recommended one. That difference is often expressed during training, and sometimes in the documentation as well.


-----Original Message-----
From: Porrello, Leonard
Sent: Friday, February 03, 2012 10:33 AM
To: Dan Goldstein; techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: WRONG!..... -ish?

"We recommend" puts too much weight on the personal authority of the speaker. Instead, I prefer using statements that are, at least in appearance, more objective. For example, "It is best to use a text editor (such as Notepad)."

I also agree with those that prefer the use of an imperative, such as
this: "Do not remove the covers that are installed at the factory as removal of the covers may cause...."

-----Original Message-----
From: Dan Goldstein
Sent: Friday, February 03, 2012 5:33 AM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: WRONG!..... -ish?

What if the consequences aren't dire? Many of us use "recommend" when we think an action is preferable but we acknowledge that it might not matter to the reader.

"We recommend using a text editor (such as Notepad). If you use a word processor (such as Word), unwanted formatting items might be copied into the string value."
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Follow-Ups:

References:
WRONG!..... -ish?: From: McLauchlan, Kevin
Re: WRONG!..... -ish?: From: kcbillb2
RE: WRONG!..... -ish?: From: Dan Goldstein
RE: WRONG!..... -ish?: From: Porrello, Leonard
RE: WRONG!..... -ish?: From: Dan Goldstein
RE: WRONG!..... -ish?: From: David Harrison
RE: WRONG!..... -ish?: From: Cardimon, Craig

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