Writing British English

Subject: Writing British English
From: joy -at- TRIO -dot- COM
Date: Thu, 7 Nov 1996 20:21:35 -0500

Dear Tech Writers

I am a writer in an international software company. We produce documetation in
about 15-17 different languages for our products. We recently added Bristish
English as a new language. We hired a new writer in our office over the
Atlantic specifically for this purpose. When I got a copy of the first manual
that this writer produced I tried very hard to find major differences in the
writing. The only real thing that I found were several spelling differences. I
also found that the writing style was not as clear and consise as I try to make
mine.

I guess what I want to ask is there a REAL need to have 2 different
manuals...one for Americans and one for english speakers over the ocean? Do
speakers of the British English language really take offense at the American
English documentation??? If there is a REAL need, is the spelling differences
the only difference in these two types of writings. If this is the case I do
not see why a simple search and replace function could not transform an
American English manual to a British one.

Also, if you know of any books or other resources that I may refer to on this
subject I would really appreciate it you could share them with me.

Any advice would be appreciated....this is an ongoing discussion in this office
and I just want to be educated on both sides of the issue.

Joy Switzer


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