Re: Editorial and technical reviews

Subject: Re: Editorial and technical reviews
From: Elna Tymes <etymes -at- LTS -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 11:49:29 -0800

Sue Heim wrote:

> My boss wants the programmers to do both an editorial and technical
> review. I would like them to not waste the time *right now* on an
> editorial review, and just concentrate on the technical stuff (like,
> am I in left field or right field, or am I right on base?).

If you are in a small company (and it sounds like you are), you have an
operating environment where everybody gets to have a say in almost
everything. IOW, things aren't really departmentalized. Thus,
programmers' natural tendency to comment on editorial matters is
unfettered by long-standing procedures and role definitions. You can't
KEEP 'em from making editorial comments.

Your boss may have dealt with this situation before and thus decided
that it's just best to let the techies have their say in view of the
time crunch and keeping most people happy. The only way I know to
counter this is to, as others have suggested, preface the review copies
with a memo outlining clearly who the reader is, what this reader is
likely to know or not know, and emphasizing that you're writing for this
reader, not for techies.

In my experience, you can even say it in bold and caps that you want
technical comments ONLY, and they'll still make editorial suggestions.
Take a deep breath, remind yourself that they had good intentions, and
do what you intended to do anyway. AND keep their review copies,
annotated with your decisions, as a CYA.

Elna Tymes
Los Trancos Systems

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