Re: A direct attack on TW?

Subject: Re: A direct attack on TW?
From: Tom Johnson <johnsont -at- FREEWAY -dot- NET>
Date: Fri, 24 Jul 1998 11:22:39 -0400

Speaking as a pilot (although I don't play one on TV), pilots are not
intimidated by manuals. Pilots habitually refer to checklists and
procedures during many aspects of flight. Without seeing the ad, I think I
would be inclined to give your product a chance first. When I'm shopping
for some kind of gizmo, I frequently ask to see the manual before I buy the
product. I want to make sure I'll have the information I need, and how
accessible it is, in case I ever have a problem.

Here's my suggestion for your next ad, "The screen went blank. What do I do
now? I know, I'll check the manual...WHAT! NO MANUAL?"

Tom Johnson
Traverse City, MI. Where the air and water are clean.

business johnsont -at- starcutter -dot- com
personal tjohnson -at- grandtraverse -dot- com

On Thursday, July 23, 1998 3:11 PM, Burke Michael wrote:
> All
> I wanted to pass on an interesting advertisement that takes a direct
> swipe at a user manual I wrote, and at all user manuals in general.
> A recent ad run by one of our competitors directly attacked our product
> because of the existence of a user manual, essentially implying that
> since we supply a manual for out product, then our product must be
> terribly complicated. The manual in question runs a scant 50 pages, 30
> of which are installation instructions, but this is hardly mentioned in
> the ad.
> Their product uses a special keyboard which you can use to access the
> various elements of the software. So it doesn't need a manual.
> Our product is intuitive enough that it probably doesn't need a user
> manual, but since we needed to do an install guide, we decided to put
> some interface instructions, as well.
> Now I know that this is merely an ad that is running in a magazine aimed
> at a very narrow audience, one that probably doesn't want to read a
> manual (professional pilots). But, should we as TW be concerned about a
> direct attack on a product based on the existence of a manual?
> Michael Burke
> Technical Writer
> Anonymous Corporation (for legal purposes...)

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