TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Keeping your nose clean From:Mark Levinson <mark -at- SD -dot- CO -dot- IL> Date:Wed, 21 Dec 1994 16:24:35 IST
I can't write, "He wiped his nose with a Kleenex,"
** Maybe you can't if the manufacturer is a big client of yours and you
want to remain on friendly terms. But a lawyer can't bring a
reasonable suit against you for a sentence like that, assuming you mean
a Kleenex tissue. The grey area begins when you start to cheapen the word
by implying that any facial tissue, regardless of manufacturer, can be
considered a kleenex. A sharp-eyed lawyer might ask you
to cease and desist or even to apologize for any implication like that.
But you're not in serious trouble unless you apply the word "Kleenex"
or "kleenex" to the wrong stuff malevolently or for profit.
Or happen upon a particularly grumpy judge in a particularly
Mark L. (_not_ for Lawyer) Levinson
mark -at- sd -dot- co -dot- il