RE: [TechWhirl Forums] Authors who cannot write

Subject: RE: [TechWhirl Forums] Authors who cannot write
From: Dan Goldstein <DGoldstein -at- cytomedix -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L (techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com)" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 13 Nov 2013 10:31:33 -0500

Request a meeting with the person who is pressuring you. Review the article together. If they can't understand it either, maybe they can suggest a next step.

-----Original Message-----
From: TechWhirl Community Forums
Sent: Tuesday, November 12, 2013 6:42 PM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: [TechWhirl Forums] Authors who cannot write

A message from TechWhirl Community Forums ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

I'm editing a short article intended for dissemination to our customer base. The document was written by an engineer in a non-English speaking country. This document is a mess. I've been in the telecom industry for 20 years, but I have no idea what this guy is trying to say. I've sent it back, I've asked another engineer to review it, but I keep getting the same gibberish back. There's no one to escalate this to, and I am being pressured to distribute this because customers are asking for it. But it is, honest to Pete, completely incomprehensible even to other engineers.

Has anyone else dealt with this? I should say that I speak and read several languages, have been a technical writer and editor for twenty years, and routinely encounter and deal with folks whose primary language is other than English. I have every possible sympathy for someone who is trying to write a technical paper in another language. But this is simple unacceptable. Suggestions?



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