In preparation for a redesign of Network World Canada (still a couple of months off, but beginning to take shape) and as part of that process we’ve been busy gathering reader feedback about the publication. One comment that’s come up more than once is some articles lack feeback from the people who are using the products and services we write about.
We’re certainly not looking to avoid speaking to users. Our goal is to provide readers with timely, unbiased information on significant new products and trends. Naturally vendors are only too happy to share their views with us. Where we often run into trouble is getting feedback from the people who actually use the products.
Admittedly in some cases when an article lacks user feedback the fault lies with us. It’s difficult to track down users who are willing to speak about the products.
There are a number of reasons why users are not talking. Often users are just too busy — implementing a new technology or dealing with the latest network-related emergency — to talk to us.
Another oft-cited reason is corporate policy. Many companies refuse to endorse (or condemn) any products or services they use and don’t allow their IT professionals to speak.
Then there’s the preceived fear of looking foolish. If an implementation goes awry no one wants to talk about the unexpected hiccups for fear of making themselves, their employer, or their vendor look bad.
The first two reasons are understandable. However it’s the third case where a valuable lesson can be learned.
Everyone understands no product is perfect and no implementation goes exactly as expected. If all IT products and services ran as smoothly as some vendors would promise, there’d be no need for publications like Network World Canada. Your experiences are invaluable and are a service to your peers.
We’d like to encourage readers to be more open about problems or issues they’re having with their network technologies and vendors.
Network World Canada is a forum where IT professionals can share ideas that work, those that don’t and let others know about issues they need to overcome. Everyonebenefits and is able to do their jobs better and avoid the mistakes that others may have made.
Network World Canada will continue to provide readers with the latest news about new products and technologies. But we also want readers to think of us as a voice for the Canadian networking community.
Please feel free to submit your feedback on articles in the publication, or ideas for articles that you haven’t seen. You won’t be ignored.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.