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Re: Re: st: Stata Technical Bulletin


From   n j cox <n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk>
To   statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu
Subject   Re: Re: st: Stata Technical Bulletin
Date   Fri, 15 Feb 2008 19:55:56 +0000

A member of the list recently advised that those not knowing the answer to a question should just say nothing. That is better advice than the opposite, and would trim the traffic down somewhat, at the expense of making a few threads less entertaining.

But as Nick Winter rightly says, StataCorp tend to say nothing on these questions, even though -- as Kit Baum rightly says -- at users' meetings the .pdf question is regularly answered with "No, and here's why not...".

Anyway,

FAQs of the form "Stata has not or does not do X or StataCorp has no plans to do Y" are in my view most unlikely.

0. They are bad advertising and public relations.

1. If StataCorp makes a categorical statement, then people may well believe them and make purchases or plans accordingly. Then if StataCorp changes its mind, the company will be embarrassed and at least some users may become annoyed or irritated or even litigious (some may be overjoyed...).

2. Suppose a user makes something possible, or partly possible. Then immediately someone will expect a change in what StataCorp says.

3. Competitors and critics out there may well notice.

4. People would try guessing games based on the complement, i.e. StataCorp say they have no plans to do X or Y or Z, but notice that A, B and C are not mentioned.

5. And so forth (or fifth?).

Nick
n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk

Nick Winter

Could there be a FAQ on this question, which comes up periodically? I
realize that's tricky, because the FAQ lives on stata.com, and StataCorp
may or may not want to make an official statement about the (non-)
availability of PDF manuals . . .

My sense of the flavor of comments when this comes up are

(1) StataCorp says nothing

(2) Users speculate that StataCorp is unlikely to do this, as manuals
are an important revenue stream for StataCorp, and once they exist as
PDFs they will inevitably be floating around on the internet.

(3) Users also note that the online help is vast.

--Nick Winter

Nuno wrote:
> Hi everyone,
>
> I do not want to hijack this thread, but I would like to know if Stata Corp
> is also considering making the manuals available in pdf format?

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