Is Do It Yourself (DIY) Culture Killing Our Ability to Interact?

Reading: Is The DIY World Making Us Lonely & Unprofessional?

Health & Lifestyle

Is The DIY World Making Us Lonely & Unprofessional?

Cutting the middleman has saved corporations and media outlets money. But has the quality of the products we produce and our personal quality of life declined?

By Lesley Jane Seymour

A friend sends me a query from a reporter looking for female journalists with great advice for getting a scoop. “Are you interested?” she asks. “Sure,” I say, “happy to talk to them.” When I look into the query however, there is no request for an interview, just a form to fill out with my bio and my photo and my tips. This is weird, I think, but fill it out anyway. Next thing I know it’s published— first on Buzzfeed, then on Thrive. Though I’m thrilled to be included in this list of 59 female journalists, I think to myself, “This is journalism?”

DIY Publishing Means I No Longer Talk to Editors

The same thing happens after I’m approached by another friend to contribute my story to a book called, “Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Empowered Woman.” When I examine the link, it’s the same thing: I fill out all the information, submit my essay, and they get back to me if they like it. I tell my friend I don’t really have time to submit things and see what happens but I’m happy to do it if I can speak with the editor. Finally, I do connect to a human; I write the story and I’m in.

But when the publicity group approaches me, it’s DIY again: fill out a form with all of my press contacts (I have 1000, so I told them to fuggedaboudit). And on it goes: Want to learn more about an interesting content management system that I’ve stumbled across on the web or more about why I need The Instant Pot? Watch the videos! Read the FAQs (frequently asked questions, for those who aren’t knee deep in this stuff) and read the reviews.

I Miss Shouting “Rep-re-sentative!!!” Into the Phone

Oh wait, it gets better. Now we’re invited to chat with a bot in a pop-up window who is about as intelligent as a rock and who keeps surfacing the same irrelevant FAQs or articles that never answered my question in the first place. Look, I get the efficiencies of the you’re-on-your-own economy. But this lack of human contact is making me long for the days when I had to hang on the phone pounding the “0” (for operator) button and shouting “rep-re-sent-ative!” to the robo voicemail.

How do you feel about DIY? Post your thoughts on the CoveyClub Facebook page here.

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