Re: Proper Grammer - Need For?

Subject: Re: Proper Grammer - Need For?
From: "Anthony Markatos" <tonymar -at- hotmail -dot- com>
To: scharker -at- connectives -dot- com, techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Fri, 12 Nov 1999 15:10:51 PST

Tony Markatos said:

The key [to effective technical communication]is STANDARDIZATION of terminology, not good grammer. I used to be a air traffic controller (tower and radar approach control). Grammer wise, many controller-to-pilot communications (both oral and written) are poor. [Yet] Clear and concise air traffic controller-to-pilot (technical) communication does consistently occur. Believe me, if it did not, you would soon here about it on the news! The key is standardization. Controller-to-pilot communications are very highly standardized.

Sandra Charker responds:

Usability guru Bruce Tognazzini has another take on the conventions of

Tony Markatos responds:

Bruce believes that standard pilot-to-controller comunications are some some sort of "secret mens-only club lingo" that is hard to understand and, therefore, restricts many (especially women) from becoming pilots.

Bruce is wrong. It's not that hard. I received my FAA air traffic control certification when I was nineteen years old (in the U.S. Air Force). The year before, I graduated high school with a 2.0 GPA.

I was a pretty good controller. I worked many-a-day with very heavy air traffic (for example, departing planes having to wait 30 minutes or more on the taxiway for take-off clearance).

Sandra Charker said:

Tony's post is an extreme example of the difficulty of changing established usage, however inappropriate or unnecessary it's become.

Tony Markatos responds:

Again, pilot-to-controller communications are NOT that criptic; there is no "male-only" conspiracy going on. These communications are very effective. When was the last time you hard about a mid-air collision within the U.S. These oral and written communications clearly demonstrate that the key to effective technical communications is standardization -- not proper grammer.

Tony Markatos

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