Should Serotek Start a Newsletter?

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Serotek? Newsletter? What gives! Serotek is a company that has always prided itself on breaking out of the traditional mold. Our corporate culture encourages things like hilarious April Fool's posts like like GTO or the notetaker that just got bigger, and instances where employees offer software trial resets for everyone while the boss is too soused on margaritas to stop them.

So why is a company like that venturing in to the dry, purely informational world of newsletters? I’ll tell you why. It’s because of that one little word I tend to throw around a lot in all my talks and blog posts. You’re probably scratching your heads wondering which word I’m talking about. After all, I talk a lot, so that’s an awfully large set of words to choose from. But the word I’m talking about today is community.

One of the most beautiful things about a community is that it’s filled with people who have disparate interests, perspectives and opinions. Of course, the thing that makes a community so wonderful is also what makes it the most challenging, and yes, even frustrating at times. You see, all those people who have different opinions and perspectives? Sometimes, those perspectives and opinions are quite a bit different than your own.

So what does it mean to belong to a community where people question your opinions, challenge your beliefs, and ask you to defend your positions on things you feel passionately about? It means that you’re given an incredible opportunity to grow. You get the chance to hear voices that aren’t the ones in your head. Sometimes those voices speak sense, and, well, sometimes they don’t. Now what does any of this have to do with newsletters anyway?

The truth is that I don’t like newsletters. You give me a choice of listening to a podcast, posting comments on a blog, sitting in a chat room and debating with people, or reading something purely for news content, I’m going to choose the more interactive avenues every single time. I think that newsletters just aren’t a compelling vehicle for disseminating information. Once I read the newsletter, what’s the next step? Where’s the call to action? Where’s all the interaction that I crave? Where are the clever one-liners that make me chuckle? Why am I reading this anyway?

Suffice to say I’m not a fan of newsletters. However, I’m just one person in a huge crowd of people with diverse tastes and learning styles. It may be that lots of other people agree with me and think that newsletters are as antiquated as the rotary phone or MySpace. Or, it just may be that there are lots of you out there who want something in your inbox every quarter that gives you valuable information without the need to wade through lots of audio, or be distracted by those clever one-liners.

So, here’s your chance to tell us what you think. Leave us a comment here and let us know how you feel about newsletters. How often would you want to see one published, and if we do publish one, should we go after a specific audience? What kinds of information would you like to see in a Serotek newsletter? Do you want a newsletter at all? We want to know what you think. Oh, and you can certainly come in to the SAMNet chat rooms and debate with me as well. Whatever your opinions are on newsletters, Apple vs. Android, or even ranch Vs. Blue cheese, you’re bound to find someone in the community who is eager to have a dialog with you. Come on in, the water’s fine!


I don't have a strong opinion either way, but a newsletter wouldn't be unwelcome. I have a hard time hearing the podcasts because the SA media player doesn't always work for me (It's not on your end; it's my silly computer; it doesn't like the windows Media player very well). However, I can listen with Winamp, plus I look at some of the forums, so I don't really feel like I'm out of the loop too much. I'm curious to se what others think.

I'm okay either way, but I like newsletters. True they are only a one-way conversation, but I would very much welcome a Serotek newsletter. I think all the other AT companies have them, so go for it! There've been times when both my laptop and desktop PC's haven't gotten along with the SA Mobile Media Player for whatever reason, and I've had to listen to Serotalk and other content using Winamp. But the more the marrier, eh?

I think we have plenty of information. I do believe that serospectives has definitely outlived its usefulness we already have 4 podcasts dealing with some form of technology so that is more than enough. As far as eol, I never have gotten the point of that one but I'm old. Smile!

I personally would not read a newsletter since like Mike, I prefer more interactive media. I would however appreciate being notified when new movies or tv programs are added to the entertainment section of samnet. That would save having to look under a specific show to see if new seasons have been added.

Thank you.

No newsletter needed. You guys do a great job of keeping us informed with all your podcasts.

I have some suggestions for serotek. Have a podcast newsletter where you list new podcasts website addresses that the serotek staff has found use ful and helpful. Then list different publications that serotek staff has gotten and found use ful as well as help ful.

I always thought newsletters were kind of a one-way thing. You can talk to people, but they can't reply. I don't know. Guess either way works, but blogs feel better.

As my subject says, I want news on Deaf Blind related stuff. I am one and its hard to find the news and so forth on that type of subject.


As great as information is through audio means, not everyone enjoys having to get all of their information that way. As one of the other writers has pointed out, not everyone can even access the audio. So, for those who cannot hear it and for those who don't enjoy listening to lots of podcasts, I think a newsletter would be a great resource. It's certainly something I would read and would even consider contributing to depending on the subject matter.

I think a quarterly news letter would be good. This is because we can no where the company is going and news comes very fast in our tech society. If somebody missed a fact they can get it in a news letter.

I think news letters are great, just in case you don't have a way to listen to the pod casts for whatever reason. But, I think the news letters should include whats new with products and services, and new promotions you have to offer.

To be perfectly honest, I often ignore News Letters, preferring instead of reading something on RSS or Twitter. That said, a News Letter, specially for a company like this one is perfect. Why, you may ask? Simple, Serotek is a very interactive and active company, and sometimes it is hard to keep up with it. So, having a news letter would be a great way to "catch up" as it were. A way where I can quickly check and see if there is something new I want to check out. So, I do think a news letter is a good idea. Now, the question of how often it should be published. I would say no more than every 3 months, but not less than twice a year. Maybe quarterly would be perfect. Anyways, take care guys.

I love newsletters, and more generally one-way communications - I'm just not a "people person", - but their usefulness is primarily where no other reasonable means of communicating information is practicable. You do an excellent job (although, of course, improvements can always be made) in providing up-to-date news on technology in general, and your product enhancements in particular, through your website and podcasts, so I think a newsletter would be redundant.

Besides, I receive perhaps 40 or 50 newsletters per day, and therefore there would be a danger of the droplet being consumed within the flood!

I'm not convinced to be honest. You do a fantastic job with the podcasts, blogs and Twitter feeds etc. I'm just not sure what a newsletter would add to the equation. Personally I'm not sure I'd make time to read it, but each to their own! Perhaps if it were just monthly or quarterly though, and served a specific purpose, I might find myself reading it, who knows.

Actually, I am indifferent about starting a newsletter. Don't get me wrong, it sounds great! I feel that Serotech does so much for the community already, that I would not want any of the things you have now to lose any of their quality. On the otherhand, if it is something that you would like to try, you have my support.
I would like to make a suggestion. I once worked for an agency where I started a newsletter. To help keep the subscribers interested, I kept it informative and humorous. You all love humor, I don't believe that you all would have any trouble with that.
Keep up the great work. Guys. Your iBlink Radio app has been my favorite app for over a year.

while I prefer podcasts a quarterly technology-based newsletter would be an alternative source of information for people who do not have time to listen to podcasts.

Sadly, I don't have much time to listen to all the audio I would like to be able to hear. It is very easy for me to read emails here and there on busses or my lunch break ETC. I would read a Serotek newsletter. Publishing one quarterly or even monthly sounds right, hopefully not any more often than that though.

no i believe that tthat serotek should keep things the way they are as someone who subscribes to menny email lists i believe that tthe level of interaction with users would decrease and that serotek would end up being like every one else in at. i would like to say keep up the great podcasting yall do.

I welcome the idea, I enjoy your podcasts but like others don't always find the time for listening to long podcasts. Based on the good quality of your content, I think you would produce a worthwhile newsletter that I would read.

I hear enough audio in my head, and don't listen to podcasts unless I either know the podcaster personally, or I'm truly interested in the information they provide. I'd like a newsletter, perhaps quarterly, describing what's going on at Serotek, new products and ideas in development, maybe an empliyee feature with a bio. Something easy to skim for those of us who might do that, in email format. I often wonder what's up at Serotek, but don't download the podcasts because as I said, there's much too much audio in my head already.

I have sought to convert my information-consuming life to the philosophy of a Digital Lifestyle where it comes to how I get current news, entertainment, etc. So though I love reading, a Serotek newsletter would be the last place I'd look for news and information because I am looking to its highly interactive podcasts to deliver relative content to me. There are quite a few venues that do newsletter/e-Magazines well, such as AccessWorld, and so for life in the fast-lane, this boy will always go to the Serotek podcasts first on hichever technology can connect to my mobile devices before reading a newsletter.

Hi Mike , I bought Samnet several years ago at the nfb senior division auction. Yes, I think you should have a newsletter. I did not know about the new functions of samnet or what docuscan did. ai hope you can (mike) speak at the nfb convention this 2013 so the members can learn more about samnet and docuscan and system access. I am going to tell our blind group this Saturday. Oh, also I hope that I can get my subscription of samnet resolved. If you can help me, please call 810-767-0870 get my samnet. I think I would be hooked! Sincerely, Georgia Kitchen,
NFBNewsline Coordinator Michigan

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