Just Get To The Point:
Technical Writing And The World Today
Before now I didn't know the different types of technical writing and how they are used by basically everyone. When you think of technical writing you think about something being written on paper. I never knew that ideas could be expressed using doublespeak, gobbledygook, pictures, graphs, and much more. I learned the different types of technical writing from my technical writing class. Of course, if it weren't for this class being a requirement for my major, I would probably still be clueless as to what technical writing is.
Just recently we had our presidental election. Both presidents used
doublespeak in their campaign. I can't just say Bush because Kerry
snuck in a couple of things also. They said things that were misleading
so that they both would have a better chance of winning the election.
The way I identified the doublespeak was how our textbook in my
Technical Writing class said you could: "Who is saying what to
whom, under what conditions and circumstances, with what intent, and
with what results?"
The answer to these questions is "to win." Say what the listener wants to hear so that you can benefit. An example is Bush not saying exactly what we are fighting the people of Iraq for which is territory and oil (in my opinion); instead, he says we are fighting terrorists. Is everyone a terrorist? They don't think that they are because they are fighting for what they think is right in their country. In a way, then, doublespeak can be dangerous. As our textbook states, it is designed not to lead but mislead and only to appear to communicate--when in fact it doesn't communicate at all.
Through this technical writing class I noticed that everyone uses technical writing. Businesses use technical writing. Examples of how businesses use technical writing through doublespeak is like the car industries when they have a recall on a vehicle for brakes or an axle they may say it is due to continued use and abuse of the product and hide the actual truth, which is the product they used was faulty from the start. On paper they use technical writing when they have to write up vehicle reports, engine specifications, etc. Through an interview I conducted for my technical writing class, I noticed that the person I interviewed used technical writing. He was a computer science major at Georgia Southern and now he works for TSYS in Columbus, Georgia. He says that he has to rewrite programs, send different memos, emails, etc., to different companies. Anyone that sends emails, writes letters, orwrites books is doing "technical writing," whether they know it or not.
Technical writing is used everywhere. I can't begin to stress how much and how differently it is used by everyone. I was unsure about the course before I took it, but I think that it was a very helpful course. This was a very interesting course. I would advise everyone to take it no matter your major becasue it is informative and could be helpful to you.