The goal of holding readers' attention has made provocation a timeworn editorial strategy. Communications doesn't resort to screaming headlines like most storefront fare, but it does strive to publish eye-catching imagery for its must-read articles. This month's cover story, "One Laptop Per Child: Vision vs. Reality," with its title's inherent tension, is a case in point.
Communications also aims for authority; its articles can be a beginning as much as an end. The "Viewpoints" pages, for example, may introduce unsettled and unsettling ideas that prompt readers to react and respond not only to the editorial but to each other. Indeed, the recent debate on network neutrality that was first presented in the pages of the February issue, continued into the May issue, and it's hardly over yet.
You can be a part of this debate at cacm.acm.org. Communications' Web site invites and lends itself to quick feedback via the "User Comments" feature that allows a continued conversation about a topic. Reachable from the "Tools for Readers" at the top right of each article page, and at the bottom of every article page, the feature requires a simple sign-in (so we can follow who's speaking). From there, readers are welcome to present what Editor-in-Chief Moshe Vardi calls "well-reasoned and well-argued opinions" to keep the discussion lively. I encourage all readers to start or join an online discussion.
Ever consider yourself a blogger? If so, we should talk.
Communications wants to expand its ever-evolving roster of expert bloggers. Experience is a plus but credentials and passion are equally important. The level of commitment we require is open-ended; if you are willing to work with us, we will accommodate your schedule. If you are interested but cannot add it to your workload at the moment, we could put you on our future schedule or at least get you on our radar.
In addition, if you follow the blogs of someone you consider a good fit for Communications, we'd like to hear your recommendations. Contact us at blog(a)cacm.acm.org.
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