Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

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Jess Zafarris
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Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby Jess Zafarris » Tue Oct 17, 2017 11:25 am

Hello all.

I believe Brian Klems, the former Online Content Director, may have addressed this before, but he has left Writer's Digest in order to spend more time with his family and work on a novel. I'm Jess Zafarris, the new online content director who is stepping into his role. Brian spoke very highly of the WD community at large and those who post in the forums in particular, so I'm thrilled to get to know everyone.

A bit of background: I have a master's in digital and investigative journalism and a bachelor's in literature. I am a digital native with nine years of professional experience in digital media and writing. I'm formerly the editor-in-chief of HOW, a graphic design magazine, and the online content director of two graphic design news websites. I have a peculiar flair for experimental and interactive online journalism. In my previous jobs, I've written, edited and published work for TV, magazines, and newspapers, as well as short stories, blog articles, and more.

Do please let me know if there are specific topics you'd like to see addressed, or if you have any questions about WD. I'm especially looking forward to our upcoming website redesign of Writer's Digest—the current wireframes look wonderful.

A fun fact about me: I have a particular passion for interesting and humorous word etymologies, and I'm working on compiling a book on the topic. I've written about 70 blurbs for it so far. Here's the latest:

"Squid" is thought to be a sailors' variant of "squirt," referring to the ink ejected by the cephalopods. Commonly used as the name of the fried culinary dish, "calamari" is also the name of a specific genus of squid and comes from the Latin calamarius, literally "pertaining to a pen." The Latin predecessor calamarius is from calamus, meaning "a writing pen," and literally "reed." When used to refer to an entire animal, the word "calamari" most often refers to the genus Sepioteuthis, commonly known as reef squids or oval squids, but once prepared as the common fried dish, many species of cephalopod can be referred to as calamari. Cephalopod ink is primarily composed of melanin. Octopuses generally produce black ink, while squid produce bluish-black ink, and cuttlefish produce brownish ink. Formerly, from the 1560s, "calamari" was also used as a common name for cuttlefish due to their pen-shaped internal shells and their ink.

T.A.Rodgers
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby T.A.Rodgers » Tue Oct 17, 2017 3:48 pm

Welcome to our happy home.

deddmann_writing
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby deddmann_writing » Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:03 pm

That certainly matches the email I just got from WD.
I wondered about someone thinking Jessica had taken over from Brian and was getting ready to note that email said otherwise:
Jess Zafarris is an energetic multimedia journalist with more than 7 years of experience writing and editing, and the online content director of Writer's Digest. Thanks for confirming what I think the WD email had said.

You have an interesting background. As to the forum we hope the rumors of getting better software are true.

The immediate problem I have is that my pc slows to a crawl and at times I see messages on the bottom saying loading ads and doing other things that I wish I could block completely. Only happens here at the WD site. I dont see any ads. But I do see that my pc is limping slowly and not running which interferes with trying to type a post.

I suspect that the WD website has a bot virus. I will be scanning my pc again to be sure it is not hosting itself here too.

Jess Zafarris
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby Jess Zafarris » Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:12 pm

>we hope the rumors of getting better software are true.

@deddmann_writing That is certainly my desire; this forum is a wonderful resource… with some serious technical issues.

As far as I am aware at the moment, the broader WD website redesign will happen first—I believe before the end of the year. I do not have any additional information specifically about the forum functionality, but if I am guilty of anything it is doggedness, so I'll continue making inquiries and keep you posted as I receive information about it.

Edit: Also, thank you for the information about the ads slowing things up; I have similar problems on my Mac and may be able to address this in the short term.

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Dreaming Imrryr
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby Dreaming Imrryr » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:36 pm

Welcome Jess Zafarris.

And hi T.A.Rodgers, this topic should be moved to the "Writer's Block Party" so more readers can see it, if it stays here in "Introductions", the spam will quickly push it to the back pages.

:)

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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby deddmann_writing » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:57 pm

[quote="Jess Zafarris"]>we hope the rumors of getting better software are true.

@deddmann_writing That is certainly my desire; this forum is a wonderful resource… with some serious technical issues.

As far as I am aware at the moment, the broader WD website redesign will happen first—I believe before the end of the year. I do not have any additional information specifically about the forum functionality, but if I am guilty of anything it is doggedness, so I'll continue making inquiries and keep you posted as I receive information about it.

Edit: Also, thank you for the information about the ads slowing things up; I have similar problems on my Mac and may be able to address this in the short term.[/quote]
===========

Either the code is very buggy or you all have been infected with scumware.
I keep getting messages at the bottom about some ads.tv ad. It looks more like you are being used by scumware to use my pc as a bot to push ads out to other pcs. Now if you all actually are putting ads here from some other folks not just WD then you need to make sure their code is compatible with your platform. And if you are not pushing those ads then do some serious scumware removal. malwarebytes aka mbam is the platinum standard.

Jess Zafarris
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby Jess Zafarris » Thu Oct 19, 2017 5:37 pm

I've filed a ticket with regard to the ads and the errors we're getting on the forum—will keep you posted. Thanks again!

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ostarella
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby ostarella » Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:49 pm

[quote="deddmann_writing"]

Either the code is very buggy or you all have been infected with scumware.
I keep getting messages at the bottom about some ads.tv ad. It looks more like you are being used by scumware to use my pc as a bot to push ads out to other pcs. Now if you all actually are putting ads here from some other folks not just WD then you need to make sure their code is compatible with your platform. And if you are not pushing those ads then do some serious scumware removal. malwarebytes aka mbam is the platinum standard.[/quote]

You might want to give your pc a check - I haven't seen any ads (but then I have a couple ad blockers, too).

deddmann_writing
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby deddmann_writing » Thu Oct 19, 2017 11:10 pm

[quote="ostarella"][quote="deddmann_writing"]

Either the code is very buggy or you all have been infected with scumware.
I keep getting messages at the bottom about some ads.tv ad. It looks more like you are being used by scumware to use my pc as a bot to push ads out to other pcs. Now if you all actually are putting ads here from some other folks not just WD then you need to make sure their code is compatible with your platform. And if you are not pushing those ads then do some serious scumware removal. malwarebytes aka mbam is the platinum standard.[/quote]

You might want to give your pc a check - I haven't seen any ads (but then I have a couple ad blockers, too).[/quote]
=========

I have checked my pc. It is clean. I have multiple scumware blockers and removers.

It only happens when I am at WD forum and not other sites. Unclear if it is related to my browser and opsys or not.
It is intermittent but when it strikes the pc barely crawls and does not run fast.

The messages fly by a bit too fast to read them. Maybe I can put my camera on burst mode and possibly capture them so they can be read.
But it sure seems like third party ad serving sites unless they are a cover for trying to inject scumware. So the question is: is WD serving external ads or are they infected with a bot that is trying to spread. Or could it be related to forum software bugs. No problem at other parts of WD.com.

It appears to be trying to load something for a pdf file (!) as i also get an error message that it is out of date do i want to update it.
That sounds like a sign of a scumware trying to infect my pc when they want to update things or talk me into doing it.
I killed flash as that is a big security risk and I have to tell a program to run PDF files as they do not show up automatically with content just a note to run my PDF viewer.

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ostarella
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Re: Writer's Digest's new Online Content Director

Postby ostarella » Fri Oct 20, 2017 1:19 am

I wondered about it being your pc because I wasn't seeing them and I didn't recall anyone else mentioning it (although they may have in another discussion).

Weird.

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