A friend/colleague emailed me a New York Times article, titled “When a Tech Reporter Doesn’t Use Much Tech“. I thought it was insightful, providing a different perspective about all of this technology so ubiquitous in our lives. One of the featured reporter’s favorite quotes struck me, from Don DeDeLillo:
What technology can do becomes what we need it to do.
I had to reread this quote several times to gain the full meaning. In my mind, what DeLillo and David Streitfeld (the featured reporter) are conveying is that technology tends to amplify or even bend our beliefs and point of view through the lens of the tech itself. It can be like a prism, with light refracted in different directions once it shines through. We feel like we don’t have a choice in what we choose to view until we take a step back and re-evaluate.
Streitfeld was also asked what tech he does use. “I still marvel at email.” I laughed at first, then reconsidered my reaction. Email, when not a default to-do list for work, can be a primary and effective form of communication for long distance connections. Regarding the friend/colleague who sent the New York Times article, we exchange email messages on a regular basis. We’ve only met in person maybe half a dozen times. It’s like letter writing without the delay or all of the stamps and envelopes.
These informal email exchanges; they’re nice. No expectation to read any resources shared (although I always do). Simple food for thought, curated and delivered within a low-tech format.
With that idea in mind, I am using a newsletter tool called Substack. People can subscribe for free. The purpose is to serve our need to share great ideas and resources within a condensed and accessible platform. My plan: to publish once a week a list of links to blog posts written by myself and others, relevant articles I enjoyed, helpful resources, books and articles I have been reading/writing, and any events to be aware of. I will also promote some of my work along with colleagues’ efforts from time to time (you’ve been warned). Most items will relate to the topics of literacy, school leadership, and technology as the newsletter will primarily support the visibility of my blog.
To subscribe, follow this link. No newsletters up yet; I plan to start a week from today. If you have suggestions for this informal project, let me know.