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JeffreyWay
says

Our primary goal is to make the buying process as easy, and consistent, as possible. For example, if somebody buys five WordPress templates, excluding the design of course, they’re all going to be quite different: different folder structure, different options panel, different documentation formatting, etc.

This year, I’d like to start making things a bit more cohesive. To our authors: would you guys be in favor of us requiring the same help file template for all submissions?

This would be the template we’d use. http://blog.themeforest.net/site-news/building-better-template-documentation/

Right now, it’s only an encouraged option.

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SebKay
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I like the idea. However I think that authors should have the option to use a help file that they’re most comfortable with :-)

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painteddigital
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I think it would help those of us who are new to have something to conform to and help users by keeping things consistent, so I am in favor of it.

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noahhendrix
says

I am not an author, but as a customer I like the idea. My favorite documentation by far is

http://themeforest.net/item/forestcp/73046

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contempoinc
says

+1 been using that template for awhile now, some standardization would definitely be beneficial to buyers.

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CreatingDrew
says

+1

I think standardizing help templates will remove any confusion and facilitate clearer communication, which is the root cause of most template/technical issues seen in my opinion :)

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webdesigndeluxe
says

I’m completely for this, but I think it should just be more “expressed” then a rule, as I’ve seen some pretty damn good help files here on Envato. For example, people who make them in PDF ’s with their business logo, page number, etc, those are very nice, and would hate to see authors like those have to “downgrade” their help files :) I think it should be a rule though, to no longer use simple .txt help files though :) This would make everything look a lot nicer :)

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GlennMcKeown
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i definitely think all help files should have the same basic structure, with a required minimum level of content. obviously it’d be up to the individual to further expand upon the help offered.

i shouldn’t think it’d be too hard for experienced reviewers to outline the key components of a standardised help file or improve upon the existing one

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bitpub
says
+1 been using that template for awhile now, some standardization would definitely be beneficial to buyers.

+1 I’ve been using a slight modified version of this documentation and it is much more flexible then a word or pdf document. I find it easier to write and edit and users can navigate it easier and copy paste code from it in the template etc.

+1 I think standardizing help templates will remove any confusion and facilitate clearer communication, which is the root cause of most template/technical issues seen in my opinion :)

Couldn’t have said it better myself :D

Highly recommend it :)

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CreatingDrew
says
I’m completely for this, but I think it should just be more “expressed” then a rule, as I’ve seen some pretty damn good help files here on Envato. For example, people who make them in PDF ’s with their business logo, page number, etc, those are very nice, and would hate to see authors like those have to “downgrade” their help files :) I think it should be a rule though, to no longer use simple .txt help files though :) This would make everything look a lot nicer :)

My thought would be requiring a “standard form” as demonstrated by Jeffrey and of course authors could feel free to provide more in depth documentation (screencasts, fancy PDFs etc) with their final download. That way there is a standard in place while still allowing authors to provide additional excellent support/docs if they choose :)

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