Let’s say you’ve suddenly found yourself working for a boss who’s more steeped in tech culture than in journalism. As the veteran of a publication that was founded by men with a tech-startup mentality, I can attest that there’s bound to be some miscommunication. To help ease the transition, I’ve compiled some sample questions you may start hearing around the newsroom, as well as a few handy responses you can fall back on—all employing the tech jargon your new boss knows and loves.

Tech boss says: Why is it taking so long for you to publish that story?
Suggested reply: The reporter needs to ping some stakeholders.

Tech boss says: I’d love to see us roll out a “Snowfall” every week.
Suggested reply: We don’t have the bandwidth for that.

Tech boss says: Are you planning on writing about [insert pet cause here] tomorrow?
Suggested reply: It’s not on the road map.

Tech boss says: Can we touch base at 10:30?
Suggested reply: No, that’s when we have our daily editorial brain dump.

Tech boss says: Are you circling back on that story?
Suggested reply: We’re continuing the thread.

Tech boss says: I’d like to hear from some thought leaders on this issue.
Suggested reply: Let’s take this conversation offline.

Tech boss says: We’re pivoting toward more user-generated content.
Suggested reply: [Blank stare.]

Tech boss says: I want you moving the ball forward.
Suggested reply: Absolutely. We’re changing the world.

Tech boss says: Are you stoked?
Suggested reply: Totally stoked.


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Ann Friedman is a magazine editor who loves the internet. She lives in Los Angeles