A plea to regular Linux journalists: include an email address

I’m noticing a worrying/annoying trend in Linux journalism lately: quite a lot of authors don’t have an easily-discoverable email address any more. If their articles include an email address at all, it’s one that obviously gets routed through a feedback desk at the publisher of the particular article in question, which is often useless when it comes to freelance content.

It used to be far more common for mostly-freelance, specialist tech journalists to include an email address in their articles. This is invaluable.

The ‘modern alternatives’ appear to be comment sections and Twitter. Neither of these is acceptable. The 140 character limit on Twitter inherently precludes meaningful feedback or conversation. I cannot explain the subtleties of your misunderstanding of secure boot in 140 characters, tech journalist. Please don’t expect me to try. Most journalists don’t read their own comment sections, especially when they’re freelance, and posting in comments is inherently more public than private email feedback: there’s stuff I can say to a journalist in a private off-the-record email that I wouldn’t necessarily want to put out in a public comment section. (Not to mention that in these degenerate times, by posting a comment, I’m usually assigning copyright to that comment to some sort of outsourced third-party comment system provider…)

If you want feedback from the people who work in the sector you’re writing about, folks, please include an email address. Accept no substitutes.

One Response

  1. DonnieP
    DonnieP December 7, 2012 at 5:07 pm | | Reply

    Good luck with that.

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