Editorial: Change management

The changes to come will accentuate what FCW and GCN have been doing well already.

Change is difficult, even for the best of us. That has been the recurring theme in Federal Computer Week’s 20 years. And as much as we may hate to acknowledge it, that is as true here as it is at government agencies. We are changing.

In December, FCW’s parent company, 1105 Media, announced that it was buying the entity formerly known as PostNewsweek Tech Media, including the FOSE trade show, Washington Technology, Defense Systems — and FCW’s longtime rival, Government Computer News.

Two months ago we promised that we were not going to be closing down publications. We argued that, from an editorial standpoint, the purchase of PostNewsweek Tech Media would allow us to cover this community in a more holistic way.

We will now put that theory to the test. And it will necessitate some changes.
Washington Technology will continue to do what it has been doing so well for 20 years — covering the IT business in Washington, D.C. The more noticeable changes will be in the pages of FCW and GCN. We believe that the changes will accentuate what the two publications have been doing well already.
GCN will become a more technology-focused publication. It will be the “technology authority,” as the tag line will state.

Meanwhile, FCW will focus on management and policy issues. FCW will continue to cover technology but in a different way. For example, we will no longer publish product reviews. Instead, we will focus on how government agencies are using technology to implement their missions. We will be  “powering the business of government,” as our new tag line states on the cover.

To be honest, the business landscape dictated many of these changes. There is surprisingly little overlap between the subscriber bases of FCW and GCN. When we parsed the circulation figures, we were astonished to discover that only about 12 percent of FCW’s and GCN’s combined 195,000 subscribers receive both publications.

As an editorial team, our job is to focus on you, our readers. We continue to believe that this merger of companies is an opportunity. We will have more chances to tell important stories in distinct ways that will enable you to do your jobs better.

Change is never easy, but it can also be exhilarating. We look forward to wowing you.

About the Author

Christopher J. Dorobek is the co-anchor of Federal News Radio’s afternoon drive program, The Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris, and the founder, publisher and editor of the DorobekInsider.com, a leading blog for the Federal IT community.

Dorobek joined Federal News Radio in 2008 with 16 years of experience covering government issues with an emphasis on government information technology. Prior to joining Federal News Radio, Dorobek was editor-in-chief of Federal Computer Week, the leading news magazine for government IT decision-makers and the flagship of the 1105 Government Information Group portfolio of publications. As editor-in-chief, Dorobek served as a member of the senior leadership team at 1105 Government Information Group, providing daily editorial direction and management for FCW magazine, FCW.com, Government Health IT and its other editorial products.

Dorobek joined FCW in 2001 as a senior reporter and assumed increasing responsibilities, becoming managing editor and executive editor before being named editor-in-chief in 2006. Prior to joining FCW, Dorobek was a technology reporter at PlanetGov.com, one of the first online community centers for current and former government employees. He also spent five years at Government Computer News, another leading industry publication, covering a variety of federal IT-related issues.

Dorobek is a frequent speaker on issues involving the government IT industry, and has appeared as a frequent contributor to NewsChannel 8’s Federal News Today program. He began his career as a reporter at the Foster’s Daily Democrat, a daily newspaper in Dover, N.H. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California. He lives in Washington, DC.


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