Editor's Note 


I'm setting myself up for a series of snappy remarks here (ex. "We could have guessed!"), but since I skipped journalism school, I might have missed some rules and guidelines about decorum and how journalists are supposed to interact with readers.

I can probably blame my informal journalistic training, I suppose: I started my writing career at a music blog and there we were encouraged to interact with the commenters. After all, it was good for traffic; if the author of a post followed up on a question posed by a commenter, that commenter would be more likely to come back to the post for another hit. Plus, I generally enjoyed continuing the conversation. I still consider some of the people I met back then as friends, as weird as that seems. There were also some creeps, but hey, the Internet, am I right?

Back in those days was also when I developed the less-productive habit of answering criticisms when they were outside of the site I worked for. If I happened to see a blog post about my work somewhere, I'd likely leave a comment explaining my point-of-view, or whatever. Mostly, I just figured that if someone wanted to talk about me, I might as well respond. Again, less productive. I admit this.

Now that I've ascended to this gig as editor, you'd think I'd leave well enough alone, but once the Weekly shows up on the daily Google Alert or I happen to hear my name mentioned in negative way on conservative talk radio (this happens a lot lately, for some reason), I feel the draw to put in my two cents. Today, for example, I heard Jon Justice mocking me for saying that he (and his listeners) should try to "shop local," so off to Twitter I went to respond. Why? I have no idea.

I do this far too often, but I'd like to think it comes from a good place, but of course I do. Really, I got into this business to be part of a greater conversation about whatever topic is at hand, to communicate and to be understood. However, the next time someone tells me a local talk show host is saying I have "a face for print" on air, I'm going to try to keep from pointlessly retorting in tweet form. There has to be something better to do.

More by Dan Gibson

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