Communication

View vs read

While browsing through a tutorial online, I came across a link that said, “View guide.” The guide could have been a video or an article. I wasn’t sure what to expect. Since I was sitting in a quiet café without my headphones, I hesitated to click the link in case it was a video tutorial. Some of them auto-play!

If the link had said, “Read guide,” I’d expect an article and would have clicked it instantly. You might think I’m being picky because view and read are similar enough. But view is synonymous with watch, which is why I thought it could’ve meant a video tutorial.

I clicked the link and it led me to an article. So, read should have been the word used in this context. It leaves no room for doubt. It tells me that the link would 100% lead me to a text documentation, and I wouldn’t have to worry about a video auto-playing and blasting cheesy intro music. Links are a crucial part of documentation, so their wording should be clear.