Technical writers are responsible for making sure that the work listed below happens. This means either mentoring other contributors or acting as a fallback if no other contributor volunteers to do it.

  • Fixing regressions or important bugs on our documentation. This includes tasks identified through:
    • User support on WhisperBack, XMPP, etc.
    • The work of technical writers themselves.
    • The Tails community in general.
  • Redacting release notes based on the Changelog excerpts provided by RM.
  • Redacting exceptional publications on our blog (security advisory, etc.) or reviewing them against our style guide.
  • Reviewing contributions by paid workers to our end-user documentation (/doc and /support) against our style guide. For example, the Foundations Team sometimes writes known issues.
  • Maintaining a style guide of Tails-related terms and usage to summarizes the terminology decision taken elsewhere.
  • Documenting new features, including features. Documentation writing should be included in the budget if the feature has one.
  • Documenting known issues and their workarounds (e.g. on the FAQ or in the list known issues), based on information provided by our Help Desk and triaged by the Foundations Team.
  • Keeping our documentation and support pages efficient for the people reading them (relevant and easy to navigate).
  • Maintain our documentation on tools that are not part of Tails but that we instruct people to use. For example, testing, updating, and debugging Etcher or the Secure Boot utilities of macOS.

As technical writers have a limited amount of time to dedicate to these tasks, Tails as a project should redefine priorities on a regular basis. As general guidelines we should give priority to:

  • Tasks which have to be completed for a given version as documentation is a blocker for releasing.
  • Tasks which favor onboarding new contributors, either writing code or writing documentation.
  • Tasks that impact users the most or that impact the largest number of users.
  • Tasks that have the highest impact on sustainability.

These tasks are tracked using the Core work: Technical writing label on GitLab.