As I moved along blissfully in my little runner’s world little did I know how far reaching some of the things I write go. On Friday afternoon I recieved a call from two gentlemen from Rodale Press. It was 3:00 pm; 6:00 pm Eastern time so it must have been important working overtime on a Friday afternoon. Rodale Press sound familiar? Yup, the publishers of Runner’s World magazine. Maybe it was a subscription renewal call? (I haven’t subscribed in 20-plus years.) I knew once they put me on a speaker phone this was not a hello-how-are-you kind of call. After some perfunctory niceties they got to the point.
The bottomline is that they insisted that the name of my blog “The runner’s World According to Dean” be changed. Why? It is rather simple, I used the term “runner’s world” in my title.
I never knew that my runner’s world is now encompassed by Runner’s World and they now speak for all runners’ worlds and that no one can have a runner’s world of their own. I bet you didn’t even know you didn’t have your own world to run in!
Oh and get this one – it was brought to these two “gentlemen’s” attention by one of the RW publication editors who found my blog and “was confused thinking I was part of their Runner’s World”. Do they hire idiots there? Ok, rhetorical question, I was on the phone with two more.
Did you know they will stop anyone using that term. They stated that they are diligent about policing that term. So be careful when you write things like …”in a runner’s world…” or as a coach you say “…in my runner’s world…” And don’t have those words embedded in any title even if it occupies less than a third of the full title – where you clarify whose runner’s world you refer too!
They also made it clear that if I didn’t change that I would be hearing from someone soon… “and it wouldn’t be them”. But, when confronted with my objections to veiled threats, they said it was nothing of the sort. Nice. Right. I certainly have a choice. But, conflict in a losing fianacial resource battle with corporate minions is not my style.
I like making people’s days. I must have made theirs now that I’ve changed to “The Running World According to Dean”. I even put my face in the header so they couldn’t “confuse me” with anyone of their coworkers.
Upward and onward!