A letter from the editor, Lesley Jane Seymour
Why I Hate DIY
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?”
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. I finally 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.
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.