Oh hai there, 1991
Today in This Might Be Too Good To Be True news, we really liked the story about Amtrak’s (proposed) “writers’ residencies” campaign, in which the company would provide round-trip tickets for working writers as long as they agree to mention the program on social.
Some writers (well, one particular writer at n+1 magazine) question the wisdom of the idea. Evan Kindley writes:
“Clearly online publicity is an essential part of the Residency: a single free round-trip train ticket (for a seat that, in all likelihood, would have remained empty otherwise) has now resulted in several significant online clips for the company’s press kit, not to mention however many hundreds of tweets and Facebook posts referring directly to the company’s largesse, many of them conveniently logged with the hashtag #AmtrakResidency.”
He’s onto something here. Key fact: the writers themselves would not get paid to do this.