An open letter to tech journalists


Killer whales, by the NOAA, from Wikipedia

Technology journalists who take a break from their electronic exploits and write about killer whales are exempted. I'd be hilarious if I could write and deliver good jokes.

Dear technology journalists,

It has come to my attention that if you have a case of the writer’s block and can’t seem to think of an original title for your latest hardware review, you seem to think it’s appropriate to simply attach the word "killer" to a competing product.

Firstly, the titles demonstrate a fundamental misunderstanding of basic business. Often when you describe the latest device as an "iPod Killer" to use a tired example, not only do these devices end up not killing said device, but often they barely register any interest at all, such as Microsoft’s Zune.

Secondly, these titles are almost universally inaccurate when it comes to features. Calling a new Blackberry an "iPhone Killer" is misguided because they clearly are entirely different classes of devices that are targeting different markets.

I therefore implore you all to stop titling your articles with "killer" if you want to be taken seriously. If anything else, it seems appending "killer" to the name of a new hardware device seems to jinx them anyway, so you’re not doing what devices you’re praising any favours.

Okay I admit it, I’m just bitter and sick of reading these titles. Hey, at least I didn’t title these letter as "An articles with the word killer in it… killer".

Ruben FakeMiddleName Schade

Author bio and support


Ruben Schade is a technical writer and infrastructure architect in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person in bios. Hi!

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