11 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2016
  2. techwritingf16.robinwharton.net techwritingf16.robinwharton.net
    1. I would argue that technical communicators participate in shaping society anytime they offer original viewpoints, methods, technologies, or materials that affectthe way we work.

      Technical communicators shape society through their field by shaping the way information is interpreted by society. I support this opinion because they provide points of view in their work that others might not have thought of and help jumpstart the intellectual process or problem-solving process for those who use their work.

      An example of this would be someone using a help-guide for a computer they bought. They don't know how to solve the issue themselves, they read the guide, they process that information and they apply it to their problem.

    2. Technical communicators who engage in corporate authorship and who createworks for hire develop commodities of trade. Because copyright law provides thelegal fiction of corporate authorship, the actual author or authors who provided allintellectual input in developing the product are not treated as authors under thelaw. As such, under work-for-hire, not only do authors not retain rights of controlover their intellectual products, significantly, works for hire do not represent themas individuals. Therefore, these products are treated as commodities rather than asspeech for purposes of their creators’ First Amendment protection, and as theEldred v. AshcroftCourt made clear, the First Amendment does not automaticallyprotect neutral speech in copyright law.

      I spoke about this in an earlier annotation.


      Works created within the scope of employment or works-for-hire are not protected under copyright law for the author, but rather for who it was created for.

    3. For instance, technical communicators who areresponsible for creating instructions for government tax forms affect almost all cit-izens at least once a year during tax filing time.

      I find this interesting because it seems that their job as technical communicators, working for the government, can ultimately affect the way people feel about the government.

      For example, automated phone answering systems for government entities ask questions to help direct phone traffic to the appropriate department. I assume that technical communicators help to determine the questions ask, how they should be worded and what information should be requested before being dispatched to wherever the callers end up going.

    4. Authorship can allow technical communicators toparticipate in producing speech that leads to democratic interaction supportingself-actualization.

      Technical communicators author works that are used by the masses because they are effective at explaining and delivering information in a way that most people will understand. Having an avenue to share their opinions (democratic interaction) on how to solve issues, supports the talent they developed to effectively communicate (self-actualization).

    5. But supporting speech in copyright is problematic when copyrighted works arecorporate commodities rather than representations of individual authors.

      I also think its important to consider if work created within someone's scope of employment, rather than for individual creative purposes, could even be seen as copyrightable. The text refers to it, rather, as a "corporate commodity."

    6. but a standard set of instruc-tions might also involve a mere repetition of what has been previously written.

      In the Unit 1 readings, we attacked usability and suggested creating one standard set of instructions to measure it. This conflicts with this reading which suggests using one set of standard instructions across the field of technical communication could be considered a copyright issue.

    7. The Court stated that “by establishing a marketableright to the use of one’s expression, copyright supplies the economic incentive tocreate and disseminate ideas” (Harper & Row v. Nation Enterprises, 1985, p. 25)

      Nation Enterprises' use of the of the 400 words was not fair use because of the effect it could have potentially had on the free market.

      If this book would have become a NYT best seller, they would have ultimately been stealing money from a potential project of the original creator, because although they hadn't thought to use the original work in that medium, how do you know that they never would have? It infringed on Harper's right to potentially create a derivative work.

    8. And technical communicators, as well as other creative product devel-opers, may extend their means of interacting in a democratic society to workplacevenues.

      The field of technical communication replicates that of a democracy because the most effective technical communication initiatives are done attacked as a team. Each communicator within the team uses their voice to offer suggestions and opinions, which is similar to how a democracy is run.

    9. the intellectual property provision has a dra-matic impact on the work that technical communicators undertake, both as partici-pants in organizations that further business interests and as individuals who partic-ipate in democratic interaction

      The most evident way that the intellectual property clause could impact technical communicators would probably be the impact it would have on interdisciplinary collaborations. Technical communicators have the privilege of being in a field that embraces the use of others ideas, solutions, deliveries, etc. because multiple scenarios could warrant similar, if not the same, resolution.

    10. By developing the intellectual property clause in this manner, the Framers ofthe Constitution acknowledged the more abstract nature of creative thought andensured that abstract intellectual efforts are not treated as property that can bestrictly controlled or owned by one to the detriment of another.

      The intellectual property clause prohibits intellectual property from being treated as physical property that can be "controlled or owned by one to the detriment of another."

      This is interesting to me because this is how patents are controlled. Patents can be held for 20 years and are controlled by the owner during that time, granting the freedom to do whatever they like at that time. A good example of this would be the pharmaceutical industry. Companies who create pharmaceuticals can hold patents for specific types of drugs allowing them to be the sole producer and seller of that drug. As a result, the company can sell the drug at whatever price they would like because they know consumers will have to buy it from them.

    11. The time limit and lim-ited monopoly create a public domain of information, and, as a result, a basis ofknowledge that is accessible to all citizens and enables democratic dialogue andexchange of ideas.

      Most copyrighted material, unless under special circumstance, is protected for the time span of the author's life plus 70 years. After this, the material can be used by anyone.

      I think it's beneficial to society to have a time limit on copyrighted materials because it provides the opportunity for the work to be improved or a derivative work to be produced.