[GNC-dev] Report with Fiscal Year

Borden borden_c at tutanota.com
Tue Sep 7 03:22:42 EDT 2021

> Formal vs. layman terminology--or behavior for that matter--is a constant tension in GnuCash. AFAIK none of the developers has formal accounting training past one or two college courses; most rather less. Even fewer of the user base have any formal accounting training at all and so we try to be very gentle about using formal accounting jargon: For example one must override a default preference to see Debit and Credit column headings instead of Deposit and Withdrawal. I guess Fiscal Year vs. Accounting Period falls in the same bucket except that nobody's ever added Fiscal Year to the formal accounting labels in GnuCash.
Yeah, it's one of the first settings I change.
My opinion is that you aren't doing anybody any favours when proper vocabulary exists, epecially when the Internet can bring people up to speed quickly. If people are smart enough to download and install GNC on their computers, they're definitely smart enough to learn debits, credits and proper account names.

If it's still too difficult, then there are plenty of accountants happy to provide guidance. Proper terminology will minimise language barriers and get to solutions faster. Even if a client can't use "expense" correctly in a sentence (most confuse it with "expenditure"), or confuse "tax credit" with "tax deduction", at least it gets me in the ballpark.

And, let's face it, even if most people insist on doing their own bookkeeping, sooner or later they're going to need a professional to file their taxes or dig them out of the mess they've made of their books. That's how we get most referrals. So they'll face the technical language sooner or later.
I eked through biology in grade 11, but if I'm going to talk to a doctor (especially over the phone these days), I'll take 10 minutes on the Internet so I can say that the pain is "along my lymph nodes on the right side of my neck" than "the bumps next to my throat."

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