By Matt Nadelson / New York City
The date was March 19, 2020. I was working at a client’s home in Brooklyn Heights. The appointment was routine, but the news was anything but. Covid aka coronavirus was raging in Europe and it felt inevitable that it would eventually come to our shores.
When I walked out of that appointment, I walked right into quarantine. On-site IT support was the bread and butter of my company, Computer Camaraderie. How would it continue to exist in a world where I might not be able to set foot in a client’s home or workplace for many months or years to come?
After just a few weeks of mainly fruitless efforts trying to convince our clients to try our IT services remotely, my prayers were answered.
Enter Andrea Sachs, an accomplished Time magazine reporter who had started a pandemic newsletter she was distributing among friends but hoped to turn into something bigger. It was the type of project that under typical circumstances would land in my inbox three to four times a year.. Aspiring writers, bloggers, and novelists are often looking for ways to use technology to get their creative projects out to the public. But it turned out that Andrea was no typical client.
Where most of our clients tend to ease online slowly, Andrea wanted to jump right into the fire. It was clear almost immediately that her goal wasn’t to have a small side project to fill her time in quarantine. Once she learned what was possible technologically, Andrea had a clear vision: The Insider was going to be a full online pandemic publication, complete with a regular publishing schedule, regular contributors and sections, and even a digital counter showing international Covid infections in real-time.
It also became abundantly clear that Andrea’s vision included a larger role for me than I ever would have expected. One where I not only would help to build the platform, but actually help to publish the stories. It developed in to a role that led me very far away from my job description as a “tech guy,” but not far at all from another passion I’ve always had: writing.
I’m so grateful to Andrea for making this all possible. And so proud of The Insider’s success. While there are many fulfilling projects that come along, there are very few in which the quality of the people, the work and the finished product all line up to make one hell of an adventure. Thank you, Insiders!
Matt Nadelson is the founder and president of Computer Camaraderie Corp., a full-service IT support firm based in New York City that specializes in the unique needs of home and small-business users.