MANY can remember how much study and hard work was necessary in order to learn how to calculate an accurate horoscope by hand. Nobody in their right mind would say it was easy. Then came those wonderful astronomical programs which could do all the calculating in a matter of a few seconds -- without errors, and even more accurately. Everyone celebrated this amazing achievement. What a blessing not to have to spend so much time with this boring calculation task, meaning more time could be spent with delineation [reading] of the chart so as to give the client a more complete consulting service.
But then something perhaps not expected happened. Programmers began adding "canned" readings to the astronomical calculations -- the birth of computer-read [no-brainer] [so-called] horoscopes!
These astronomy programs with added Astrology text meant, in actuality, that anyone who had (has) a computer and could (can) afford to purchase these "chart-reading" programs could (can) start doing charts for the public. It was (is) not even necessary that they knew (know) a planet from an aspect. All these "keyboard astrologers" had (have) to do was (is) type in a name and birth data and the computer did (does) the rest. They collected (collect) the money and by mail or email sent (send) back to clients [customers] these "reports/readings" at prices no legitimate astrologer could (can) possibly match. In effect anyone who had (has) a computer could (can) claim to be an astrologer. And for the most part the public didn't (and still does not) know there is a critical difference.
Unfortunately, many qualified astrologers jumped (and still are) on the bandwagon in order to make a fast buck without putting forth much effort. Sadly, many still use this "lazy" [and somewhat more than a little ethically questionable] way to eke out a few dollars, much to the detriment of legitimate Astrology. But since the market[place] is so saturated with "keyboard astrologers" it is becoming more and more difficult to find clients [customers]. It seems there is always someone who will offer the same "service" [actually a product] for less. Where will it all end? That's up to dedicated astrologers.
What Can You Do?
Here are a few suggestions. You may or may not agree. However, if you seriously look at the bottom line of your Astrology business -- say for the last twelve months -- you could realize something needs to be done, and soon. Please give some consideration to the comments following. You may have others. If so, you might elect to share them with readers of American Federatiom of Astrologers' Today's Astrologer.
- Use your computer for calculation purposes only.
- Stop offering (if you do) computer print-out readings -- or at the very least point out the differences between a unique personalized reading (in-person, recorded and/or by telephone) and a machine reading.
- Actively and aggressively start declaring the shortcomings of "canned" readings which you know are incomplete, contradictory and patently inadequate.
- Stick with whatever you deem are necessary fees for your services. Let potential clients know they don't get anywhere near the same level of service from impersonal computer readings. In effect, tell them that they waste money on these "one-size-fits-all" computer-generated so-called horoscopes.
- Also, start explaining counterfeit psychics who are taking (often in the name of Astrology) too much of your business.
- Most importantly, start being even more proud to be a legitimate and dedicated astrologer.