Don't you Americans have any basic right to privacy?
Nope. We have a bunch of fucking sociopaths running the corporate world these days. Another 10 years of this shit and we're all going to be stuck in some neo-dickensian nightmare. The only "people" who have rights anymore are the corporations. The rest of us are just cattle unless you happen to have a high-enough net worth.
Perhaps this would be too steep if you are a grandmother with limited resources who only wants to create a single page note about a missing cat and print it for her nearest neighbors. As a business, you want to be as sure as it ever gets that the important proposal that you are writing will be correctly opened by the soliciting party. (In many cases editable Word documents are requested, not a PDF.)
This. Google docs and OpenOffice/Libreoffice are low-to-midrange tools. They are WAY better than *nothing* and much better than that stripped-down Wordpad tool that Windows gives you out of the box. I got through college just fine using OpenOffice and I still recommend it to people (if it's appropriate for their needs), but when something just has to work without problems I get the big tools out. MSOffice is professional grade and is what you use when nothing else will do.
"An ounce of prevention is worth a ton of code." -- an anonymous programmer