I’d like to toss a hypothetical out there for y’all to ponder.
Say, for the sake of argument, that you’re an editor for a technical book publisher. You have a line of books that you want to make roughly equivalent to textbooks in layout and feel.
Now, you have an author who begins to write a book for you. You send this author your standard in-house template — complete with detailed instructions — to use. Lo and behold, this author reads the instructions and uses the template. This author notes that the template instructions contain a detailed list of software features that they should not use with their book documents, so they don’t. They do, however, insert footnotes.
The book moves into production, and now suddenly the production staff send back an email to you asking them how to handle the footnotes. It seems that the built-in footnote feature produces footnotes that aren’t visible to the copyeditor in the view they use, so the production staff wants you to either move the footnotes into the text or delete them.
I bet you thought I was going to ask you something about what you, the editor would do in this case, didn’t you? Well, no. It’s a hypothetical, you see. But isn’t it a really stupid one, that a technical book publisher would have no mechanism for dealing with footntoes and safely passing them into their layout software?