Wednesday, 2 January 2008

on the bandwagon

2 January, 2008
[1.15pm, Australian Eastern Summer Time]

OK, I'm blogging at last. (Disclaimer: This behaviour is NOT driven by a New Year's Resolution!)
I'm still feeling my way so bear with me.

Not exactly an early adopter - it took me about six years to discover Lou Reed's Transformer - I've several reasons for creating my own "web presence". Do they still call it that? Probably not.
To make it easier all round, I'll stick to my four primary drivers.

I'm the sort of person with an opinion on pretty much everything … 'opinionated'. Not a bad thing.
My opinions sometimes take a while to become well-formed; usually they're instinctive (experience-based).
Either way, they're always right. So you've come to the right place.
And, because no one is paying me to grind their axe for them, I can freely promise to tell always the truth.
Anyway, that's my first reason: I've got stuff to say. Some of it's 'important'. Some less so. And, hopefully, we'll have some fun in-between.

My second reason is that there's so much happening in the world that's just slipping through the cracks.
On the surface, we in the affluent West are 'spoilt for choice' in what we consume: information sources, communications, entertainment, food, drugs of choice, gadgets and lifestyles.
Scratch this surface - in many ways barely skin-deep - and there are real problems.
In a random kind of way I'm going to address some of these issues.
Oh yeah, and I'm happy to celebrate the positives too!

The third reason is that I'm currently making a big effort to build my business.
The last couple of years have been a real struggle for me financially but I'm determined to turn this around.
Not even having a marketing budget at present, I'm taking advantage of this free opportunity to put myself 'out there' and, hopefully, pick up a few new clients. If it doesn't click … well, at least I'll know for sure!
In a nutshell, I offer a range of services to small businesses: skills which most businesses need from time to time, yet can't deliver 'in house'.
Specifically, I have a wealth of experience in copywriting, marketing and communications, copy editing and proofreading, graphic design / digital illustration, pre-press and print liason in a range of media.
In an earlier life, I worked in journalism on and off for many years before managing Banshee! Graphics for 12 years.
Banshee specialised in typesetting and illustrating educational textbooks for Melbourne- and Sydney-based publishers.
We had a well deserved reputation in the trade for speed, reliability and excellent product, all at a reasonable price.
Although the nature of my business has shifted considerably, I continue to deliver quality and value … and always will.

To proceed at a tangent momentarily, there is a crucial nexus between 'growing' my business and my personal world view.
In terms of communications technology, we never had it so good!
In terms of markets (supply and demand), the planet grows smaller every day.
Puttting these two factors together creates a hothouse environment for a business like mine: because everything I produce can be digitised and transmitted to my client electronically AND because my client can, in turn, directly credit my bank account for services rendered, we can do business regardless of where you live.
There are more bonuses.
Pumping product and payment through telephone lines is incredibly efficient. Not only does this save my time and your money, the environmental impact of these transactions is incredibly small. This effect fits in neatly with my increasing desire to tread as lightly as possible on our planet.
No, this ain't 'serendipity'! But it's a fortunate piece of timing all round. Not only can we 'think globally, act locally' - we can start to 'act globally' in a very positive way! Think about it.

My final reason is philosophical.
I love to communicate. I love to write. I do both pretty well.
I'm no rocket surgeon but it's increasingly obvious to me that the vast majority of 'human' problems are caused by people's inability or unwillingness to communicate effectively.
Yet, too few are doing anything about it.
Beyond the depressive effect, I'm increasingly irritated with the 'quality' of language being published on the Net.
Not just in the open forums or in U-tube comments or on MySpace - choose any morass of illiteracy you like! (I for one don't begrudge dyslexic nine-year-olds their right to articulate a viewpoint!)- but in notionally 'grown-up' environments like news reports and adult discussion forums.
This phenomenon - laziness? ignorance? both? - is symptomatic of a deeper malaise, I think, wherein too many of us tend to favour instant gratification over quality communication.
Let's try to balance the scales a fraction.

OK: that's enough. First post is done. Constructive feedback welcome. Catch you next time.


Jed said...

off to a bloody flier, jed!

Jed said...

To anyone who wants to post a comment:

Apologies in advance if you experience any problems.
I'm still tweaking the settings but am trying to lock out trolls and spammers.
If you can't post a comment without giving out more information than you'd like, email me.
[and if you don't have my address, please try again later]