Changing the rules of engagement

Journalist Tom Jacobs published an interesting article on the Miller-McCune Web site yesterday entitled “Will Critique Work for Food,” an article on the future of arts journalism. I wrote about it in my New Media and Orchestras series and quoted Justin Davidson, who offered a good view at Musical America. Jacobs’ article has some great anecdotes and quotes from journalists and goes more in-depth with real-life examples, not just theory.

It made me think about some very telling real-life examples from my time at the CSO:

  • I learned about Alex Ross through his blog, not his articles in the New Yorker. I bought his book because of his blog.
  • I met Washington Post classical music critic Anne Midgette at a Liverpool Philharmonic Second Life concert.
  • My first point of contact with music critic Greg Sandow was on Twitter.

Twitter, especially, changes the rules of engagement. Just today, I posted an open letter at, directed to the candidates for the 5th congressional district of Illinois. I also e-mailed the candidates via their respective Web sites. But the Democratic candidate, Mike Quigley, also has a Twitter account (operated by his campaign). So I decided to draw attention to the letter via Twitter. Within an hour, I received a (public) response. I’m not sure if that could have been so easily achieved through the normal channels (letter, e-mail, phone call). Here’s the brief question and answer: