Re: document ownership/plagiarism (kind of long)

Subject: Re: document ownership/plagiarism (kind of long)
From: Linda Merrifield <linda -dot- merrifield -at- CITA -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 22 Oct 1997 10:17:17 -0500

Frankly, I'd be flattered that they thought our work was good enough to
reproduce as originally done. That means people are reading it and using
it. It answers the question I always have, "Is anyone out there?"

Where I work, we share everything. There's so much work to do, if we can
lift something from one of the other writer's work, we do. Why reinvent
the wheel?

Regards,
Linda Merrifield
mailto:linda -dot- merrifield -at- cita -dot- com

> ----------
> From: Stephanie Holland[SMTP:SLHOLLAND -at- MICRONPC -dot- COM]
> Sent: Tuesday, October 21, 1997 5:18 PM
> To: TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU
> Subject: document ownership/plagiarism (kind of long)
>
> Hi --
>
> I manage a technical communication group in an Information Systems
> Department. Nearly all the work we do is used inside our company. For
> example, the computer programmers in our department write applications
> that help our company operate. We writers document these applications
> in
> the form of online help and user guides to help our co-workers use
> these
> applications to do their jobs.
>
> People who aren't writers from other departments in our company are
> occasionally copying large sections of our documents and creating
> other
> documents with them. For example, we wrote a quick reference guide to
> help people switch from NT 3.51 to NT 4. We published the guide in
> HTML
> on our intranet.
>
> We recently discovered that another department printed this document
> out
> but first deleted a few parts -- one of those parts is the sentence
> that
> lists our group's name and phone number and our request for people to
> call us if they have questions or suggestions about the document.
> Another department did something similar because it wanted to reformat
> the document and store it in a special location specific to that
> department.
>
> This bugs me for various reasons:
>
> * We can't determine usability or find out about errors if our name
> and
> phone number are removed from a document because readers won't know
> who
> wrote it.
>
> * I feel this is a form of plagiarism, even though the company owns
> these documents and we all work for the same company.
>
> * There is a chance for document quality to be reduced if people start
> altering our work.
>
> My co-worker disagrees with me. He believes that as long as people are
> using the information, what does it matter if a few things are
> changed?
>
> Has anyone else run into this situation? Anyone have any opinions?
>
> Thanks in advance,
>
> Stephanie Holland
> Micron Electronics
> slholland -at- micronpc -dot- com
>
>
> ~~
> If it's about technical communication--post it! If not, don't!
> Posts: mailto:techwr-l -at- listserv -dot- okstate -dot- edu
> Commands: mailto:listserv -at- listserv -dot- okstate -dot- edu (e.g. SIGNOFF TECHWR-L)
> Archives: http://listserv.okstate.edu/archives/techwr-l.html,
> Subjects: JOB:, QUESTION:, SUMMARY:, ANNOUNCE:, or none of these.
>

Posts: mailto:techwr-l -at- listserv -dot- okstate -dot- edu
Commands: mailto:listserv -at- listserv -dot- okstate -dot- edu (e.g. SIGNOFF TECHWR-L)
Archives: http://listserv.okstate.edu/archives/techwr-l.html,
http://www.documentation.com/, or http://www.dejanews.com/
Subjects: JOB:, QUESTION:, SUMMARY:, ANNOUNCE:, or none of these.



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