As I read the most recent draft, I'll pull out a few nitpicky things (in roughly the order I see them). Okay, it's a lot of nitpicky things. Deal with it. Anyway, please take them all as friendly suggestions...
In the middle of a sentence, is it Kuro5hin or kuro5hin? What about Kuro5hin.org vs. kuro5hin.org? And, if either of the "winners" is lower case, does it change at the beginning of a sentence? Are the two (with and without the .org) interchangeable, or is there a reason to use one or the other? Or to use one exclusively? Establish a style for words specific to the site, (including the names of the cabal ...er... rusty, Inoshiro, and the other admins/editors), as well as features on/of the site ("navigation bar"? "section menu"?), and stick to it throughout.
<em> instead of all caps. It may be worth it to do a draft as "real" HTML in the final pass at editing.
In the account creation process, there are several spots that look a little clumsy to me. Simple simple simple. To tech writers, "simple" is a nasty red flag word--if you have to say it, it isn't. How about "...valid email address" in step 2, and do something with "short amount of time" in step 3. Also, without actually creating another account to check this for myself, I think it's possible to keep using the "temporary" password indefinitely, so I'd probably call it "initial" instead.
Follow these directions to create an account:
Please note that if you enter a bad email address, not only will you never receive an initial password, but you will also lock that username out of the system. ...
- Click on the "Make a new account" link. [ref in screenshot?]
- Enter a username and a valid email address. These are very important; review both for errors before you click the "Create Account!" button.
- You will receive an email that contains an initial password and the URL that you need to activate your account.
- Follow the URL and enter your password to complete the process. You should probably change your password immediately to something that's easier for you to remember (see "[link]preferences[/link]" below).
Lose the "It is just how it is." That's confusing enough for native English speakers, and it doesn't add any information that non-native speakers need to spend time translating.
Enough with the reassurances already. If I've gone through the trouble of creating an account, I'm probably willing to look at the preferences page at least once, especially now that you've recommended it to me. It it looks simple, I'll use it; if not, I won't.
If you lose your password, you can get a new one mailed to the "real" email address attached to your account. K5, unlike that other site, does not keep a plaintext record of your password.
No comma after the "is" in "Well, the short answer is anything you find interesting." And those capital D's keep showing up, too.
I might change "A summary of an article on another site and a one or two sentence statement of opinion are all well and good, but there are lots of other places for such articles." to something more like "A summary of an article on another site, with only a one- or two-sentence statement of opinion added by you, is not usually preferred here (there are other places for that)."
"How to submit an article" (and a couple of the other section headers) are not technically questions. While it's certainly in the spirit of the document, if you want to be rigid and formal about what goes in a FAQ, you should re-word it.
"Simply" again. You know. What about "Log in to your account (see "[link]Account Questions[/link]" above if you don't have one), and click the "submit story" link in the blue bar near the top of the page [another ref to screenshot?]." Usually, "all-important" is hyphenated, and it may be better to reassure people, especially those who aren't native English speakers/writers, that there is spelling and grammar help available via email@example.com, rather than threaten them with "heavy fire" for noncompliance.
Things I'd add/remove from the answer to "What goes into an article?":
drop "to it"
Oh, and current style for common english usage says spell out numbers less than (or equal to, depending on who you read) ten when used in a sentence. There's a "4" below, somewhere, too.
- drop trailing "in"; add suggested (or enforced) max title length.
- drop the first "short"; hyphens after "one" and "two"; un-capitalize and
<em> on the second "short"; comma after "Generally"; lowercase "s" in "(see..."; use "below" or make the question a link to its place in the page (or, preferably, both).
- fix the "not".
- lose the ()s; add a period at the end.
- change "option" to "optional"; change "8 options" to "8 answers"; and consider "they are interesting or amusing sometimes".
- probably shouldn't be a number, since you specifically said there were 6 parts just before the list; drop "a few times"; hyphenate "re-previewing"; recommend manually checking all links and actually reading the text (aloud if necessary).
- OBEY! [Sorry; I couldn't resist.] Again, it probably doesn't need to be numbered.
"Take note" and "remember" are redundant. How about "Remember the following important items when writing your story:"? Is rusty the appropriate email link, or would the generic "editors" address be better?
While you're fixing the words in all caps, note the "Do" right above the "resubmit" question.
In that "resubmit" question, I'd change "on that email" to "in that email".
In "moderation", use
<ul> instead of
<ol>, and lose the comma after "worthy" in "+1". Pick a style for "Front" or "front" page (same with "Section"). And there's a capital "Do" in the paragraph after the list.
After the story is posted to front or section page, all comments are topical.
Good trolls don't make themselves look like idiots. After "idiocy in someone else's statement.", consider something more like "More commonly, bad trolls make themselves look like idiots." I usually think of a troll as the message itself, rather than the person who posted it; you might consider making that distinction, too ("their authors" instead of "themselves"), since the person is definition 2 in the quote above.
In general, I like to use "above" or "below" when I'm referring to things in the same long document. And links to anchors at those places. Put a colon after "how to rate comments".
Those are stronger definitions than I remember. In fact, it's totally opposite what the current FAQ says: "Please note that 1 is not 'bad.' It just 'not as good as this other comment, which I'd rate five.'" Is the policy shift really intended?
"Readers can change their rating later, although this is not common."
Believe it or not, it's possible some people come to K5 without having been on Slashdot first. It might be a good idea to qualify it: "We do not have Slashdot-style "karma" here; ...". Rumor has it that "it's 3.5" should have an apostrophe. And "because of how" can be shortened to "because".
Put a colon after "follow the discussion", and consider using a
<dl> to delineate the options. It might be good to encourage repeated twiddling to improve one's user experience. Then again, some people just don't care that much.
"So what?" should have a lowercase "w". Do something about "hotlist listing", and lose the bit that sounds like you expect us to remember how many comments a story had on it yesterday (note to rusty if he's read this far: date/time of last comment might be useful instead).
It doesn't really look like a tab; you might consider the more generic word "link", or just tell people to click on "search" in the navigation bar.
In the store, lose the word "both"--there are more than two things listed.
We do use your email address for things. Don't suggest otherwise then contradict it. You get email every time the system sets the password on your account (the first time, and any time you request it thereafter), and every time an article you submitted makes it out of the moderation queue. We don't give or sell your email address (or any other information about you) to anyone else, ever.
You've got a stray paragraph break in the copyright section. Edna's more fun if she's not qualified as "entirely fictional".
The first "bad guys" paragraph is extremely clumsy. How about "If (and when) we get attacked, there are all of the obvious immediate responses: denying access by IP addresses, correcting security holes in Scoop, and other general running around in circles. We also contact..."? There's that "Do" again. I usually see manna spelled with a double "n". And it's not "one of our largest DoS attacks", it's just "our largest".
Instead of "Since then", use "In the first year"
When introducing the K5 cabal in the "who's involved" section, put a comma after "again".
It would be appropriate to use
<cite> instead of quotes to indicate the book Snow Crash.
Okay, at some point, people don't want to read the long nasty URLs as part of the text. Just make an actual link and we'll get the address from our browser's status line (or whatever it's called this week) if we need it for something else.
Have fun, because life is too short not to.
Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men. —MLK
$email =~ s/0/o/; # The K5 cabal is out to get you.