Re: Subject Matter What Matters

Subject: Re: Subject Matter What Matters
From: Bev Parks <bparks -at- HUACHUCA-EMH1 -dot- ARMY -dot- MIL>
Date: Sat, 1 Apr 1995 09:39:23 MST

Hi, Chas. "...one of our beloved colleagues." How kind. :-)

Anyway, in self-defense, I was never touting the government as
being an authority on clear communication--I would be the first
to stand up in support of their position as being among the
*worst* communicators. My point in making the below remark was
to enlighten some people that the term "subject matter expert"
is not unique to technical writing circles.
It is an often-used and recognized term outside of the technical
writing arena.

=*= Beverly Parks =*= bparks -at- huachuca-emh1 -dot- army -dot- mil =*=
=*= "These opinions are mine, not my employer's." =*=
===============
Chas. Bosdet wrote--
This one requires a little setting up.

Nora Merhar <merhar -at- ALENA -dot- SWITCH -dot- ROCKWELL -dot- COM> wrote--

While I agree in theory with all that Beverly and John are
saying, the fact is that "subject matter expert" or "subject
expert" or "expert" or whatever is NOT something most of us
generally use in our documentation. It is our way of
identifying a person who provides us with input of whatever
sort. I have never seen or heard this term used outside of
informal communication between tech. writers.

To which one of our beloved colleagues responded:

True that [SME] is not generally used in technical documentation;
however, it is most definitely used in business documents
(reports/white papers) in my neck of the woods. It is a commonly
used term in government, especially at high levels.

With all respect that's due, who among us is willing to defend
U.S. businesses and government as authorities on clear
communication of any kind -- "especially at high levels"?? <g>

Serially, folks: Who among us would hold up


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