I am a non-student/private citizen and I am eager to meet with professors at universities in my area so I can ask these professors a particular question about a particular subject matter. I want to ask them the same question to see if they all will give me the same answer. Based on their answers, I will then decide whether or not to pursue writing an article to be published which relates to this particular subject matter.
I have sent emails to six local universities requesting a meeting with a professor in this particular area of study and so far I have only received one e-mail reply. In that one email reply, the professor suggested that I meet instead with one of their graduate students because his consultation fee is very high. I am still waiting for the professor to provide me with the names of these grad students.
I have decided to wait at least a week before sending follow-up e-mails, or perhaps calling them directly to ask for an appointment, because I realize that professors are busy people.
This experience with trying to communicate with college professors makes me wonder if professors, in general, like answering questions from non-students/private citizens. Is it safe to say that professors, in general, would prefer that non-students/private citizens seek answers from subject matter experts in the private sector?