FAQs that are not frequently asked (but companies wish they were)

I signed up for a Windows Live Messenger account this morning and was struck by the infrequently asked questions:


The title says frequently asked questions, but they’re obviously not. They’re actually questions Microsoft wishes people would ask …

What ordinary person – Joe in the warehouse, Betty in accounting – has ever asked: How do I create a strong password? Betty is much more concerned about creating one that she can actually remember.

And Joe has never wondered: How can I create my mobile credentials?. Seriously now … what on earth are those? I’m not sure I know, and I’m a COO and architect for a software company!

These are FAQs that have never been asked. Someone, somewhere, has been told: write some FAQs so we have some help on the website. Go figure out what people might want to know.

It might be easier to … just ask people what they want to know. Or check your logs and figure out what seems hard. Or watch a couple of users interacting with the system.

It’d certainly be better.