For some reason, the help function appears to have disappeared in all Office applications. If I use F1 or the menu item I see a blank white box. If I reactivate the annoying little paper clip I seem to able to access the help topics via that interface but not if I hide the assistant.
I tried the microsoft support site and thought that article 319956 might be my answer. I made the changes suggested in that article but with no success.
I have a similar, but perhaps unrelated problem with Media Player. I had version 10 installed and could not access the help files. While looking for an answer, I realised that there was a later version available (MPlayer 11) so I installed it in the hope that the help fault would be solved - no change, I still get a little box titled "App Error" saying "error in setting up help". (pic attached)
I'm not sure whether the Office error and the Media Player error occurred simultaneously. I saw the MPlayer error first and hadn't used help in the other apps until today.