The colophon of the online platform of Resource magazine states that ‘Resource-online.nl is the website for students and staff at Wageningen UR.’ But my recent experience tells me something else.
I was finalising the proposal for my thesis when I got disturbed by the sound of an incoming Facebook chat message. It was a friend saying: ‘Is it really necessary to have an online platform for Resource?’
Beside my surprise about her direct question, without even saying hi or hello, I thought: ‘Come on girl, which century are you living in.’ Then I replied: ‘Yes, of course.’
She promptly wrote back: ‘Really? Why is that?’
Now I felt like she was trying to tease me. I was little bit pissed off with such dumb questions. Firstly, I thought, it is the only platform where my blogs are published. But I figured this answer would be too selfish. So, I wrote: ‘Publishing online is environmentally friendly and you can cover a wide audience.’
There was another quick reply: ‘OK... but why do they have a website for it? They could simply publish the pdf file of the magazine on the WUR website.’
I swear to God, this was really pissing me off. I typed: ‘Are you drunk or are you just trying to tease me. Listen Girl! I am really busy, and am just a blogger. Go and ask the editors. And if it is just for fun, let’s talk tomorrow.’
There was a prompt reply: ‘I am not drunk or trying to tease you. Just answer me this.’
Then I thought for 30 seconds. ‘Having its own website is more user-friendly. You don’t have to wait for the paper version of Resource to read the news around WUR. They can upload it regularly. Having an online platform has helped Resource to be interactive and cover news in timely manner.’
I thought this would end the conversation, but to my dismay, there was another message. ‘But Resource only covers such timely mannered news on the Dutch online platform, not on the English one. The English news only gets published online after it has appeared in the paper version.’
I didn’t believe her, so I went to the website and checked it. Yes, the allegations were true. All I could answer was: ‘Mail the editor and ask him.’
This ended the chat session, although I do wonder: why does Resource only have regular news updates on its Dutch platform? WUR has become an international university and Resource is a part of it. International students who do not know Dutch should not be deprived of timely access to news. Maybe the colophon should state: ‘Resource.online.nl is the website for students and staff at Wageningen UR, focused primarily to those who know Dutch’.