[Hidden-tech] Etiquette when responding to posts

Jeanne Yocum Jeanne at yourghostwriter.com
Wed Apr 4 11:22:08 EDT 2007

Hi, all,

The other day, I sent in a query seeking someone who might provide help to a
client of one of my clients. (Let's call her "Betty").  I have just learned
that in contacting "Betty," someone from this list (let's call her "Alice")
provided erroneous information.  "Alice" told "Betty" that she had been
"referred to her by one of my (i.e. Alice's) clients." Much later in their
correspondence, "Alice" did correct this and say her information had come
from the Hidden Tech list.  This was in her final e-mail in which she pretty
much excoriated Betty for being on what "Alice" termed a "fishing

This raises two issues for me:
1.  I do not think "Alice" should have claimed to have been referred by a
client when that was not the case.  I can think of no reason to be
misleading about where you got the information you're responding to. "Betty"
knew I was doing the post and was expecting responses from Hidden Tech
people. I think we need to be accurate about these things. Saying a client
is referring you implies someone knows your work and is recommending you.
That simply was not true in this case.

2.  I would hope that when people are following up on leads provided here
that they would try to be civil at ALL times because our responses might
reflect back on the person who provided the lead. "Alice's" last e-mail to
"Betty" was fairly rude.  She may have been accurate in her judgment that
"Betty" was on a fishing expedition, but there was no need to be rude about
it. A simple "Thanks, but I don't think I'm interested in pursuing this any
further" would have sufficed.

I want to thank the other folks who did connect with "Betty" and had better
outcomes. Nothing is guaranteed in this world, certainly not queries sent
out through an Internet listserv. But if we all respond in an honest, open
and polite manner, I'm sure we'll all get a little bit further down that
road to success in our hidden-tech lives. Thanks for listening.

Best regards,

Jeanne Yocum  | Principal
Tuscarora Communications, Ltd.
Granby, MA
Member: National Writers Union


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