One of the frustrating things to me about the distaste for Sarah’s old tweets from establishment journalists and editors is the refusal to acknowledge the role they played in encouraging/requiring young writers to build their “personal brands” with voicy and brash tweets
I came to journalism from a non-traditional background around the same time as Sarah, and being an outspoken woman of color on Twitter was how I got a foot in the door. My career opportunities usually started with emails saying: love your tweets, wanna write for us?
I really don’t think I would have ever gotten a staff job but for my Twitter persona and audience, and the idea that I or Sarah or anyone like us could build that without occasionally saying something unwise just seems unrealistic to me.
We all know how twitter works. You don’t build a brand as a freelancer or law student by tweeting your links and keeping it safe. You do it by being provocative and funny and pushing boundaries. And the gatekeepers ate it up. Usually for $150 an article.
Anyways I’m really grateful I have a job now and don’t feel like I have to flay my feelings for my supper and also I hope the mindset of the Verge statement sets a new bar for folks in the industry to think about our digital reality in a better way