charlesarthur.com: What I do

Since November 2005, I've been technology editor at The Guardian newspaper in London. I edited the printed Technology supplement, which came out every Thursday; it was discontinued at the end of 2009. (Oh, print, you fickle mistress.) I now edit the overall technology coverage in the Technology section, updated throughout the day. It covers consumer computing technologies such as PCs, smartphones, internet companies, apps, video games, and so on.

You can find a (very long) list of the stories I've written at my Guardian profile. There are tons of stories there, many of which I'm proud of, but the achievement that I'd point to overall is the Free Our Data campaign, which I created with Mike Cross in March 2006 to persuade the government to make non-personal government data available for free reuse. (One particular focus of the campaign was on the funding model for the UK's mapping agency, Ordnance Survey, which was obliged - under its funding regime - to charge people for the use of maps online). With the very capable help of Tom Watson MP, Jim Knight MP, Michael Wills MP... and Tim Berners-Lee and Gordon Brown... the campaign pretty much succeeded. The Conservative-Lib Dem coalition has committed itself to a transparency agenda that echoes all the aims we had for the Free Our Data campaign. It's a wide-ranging, subtle yet enormously important change in approach and I'm certainly happy about my role in it.

From 1995 to December 2004 I was technology editor at The Independent writing about technology, science and the environment. Major stories covered in depth included the dot-com boom (when a study found me the most sceptical journalist in Fleet Street about dot-coms' prospects - hey, do you think I was right?), the BSE crisis, .... You can search The Independent's site for stories I've written there, but many are in paid-for parts of the site.

After that I freelanced - writing a weekly column for The Independent, and for other outlets too, including The Register and Netimperative.
Among the stories that I wrote at The Register were the


Before The Independent, I was at New Scientist magazine for two years, writing about technology and also editing features on a variety of topics.

I've written about business, sports, science, medicine and.. it would probably be simpler to say what I haven't written about.

I also do media training, explain how newspapers and magaines and online sites work, and especially what journalists want from you - whether you're a big or small company, experienced or newcomer to PR and dealing with the press. (Hint: we're not so scary as you might think; but caffeine and time pressures mean we tend to cut to the chase.)

If you want to get in touch, you can email me at:

blog@charlesarthur.com. (For more urgent communication, see my contact page.)

If you don't email direct from here (and why should you?) then beware my spam filters: blank subject lines, ALL CAPITALS and odd characters will all get trapped, and probably killed. Sorry - blame the spammers. Use a meaningful subject line. (Hi! isn't meaningful, just in case you were wondering.)