Reading Usable Help
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Gordon R. Meyer
Customer reactions to PDF manuals
A forum discussion about The Death of Paper Manuals at the DealMac web site provides fascinating insight into customer's sincere reactions to a product that comes with a PDF-format manual and an offer to purchase a printed copy of it for US $60.00. A few interesting themes emerge from the discussion. Surprisingly few participants suggest that the manual should have been provided with the product, more are upset about the high cost of the printed version. Some customers write about strategies for working with PDF manuals in general. Still others suggest that not including a printed manual keeps the product price lower, allowing them to spend the money they've saved on the inevitable, more worthwhile, third-party book.