1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

At Media Companies, a Nation of Serfs

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by YankeeFan, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    David Carr in the Times:

  2. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Sounds like a great idea for a website. Start it with the promise that if and when a sale ever happens a full 10 percent share will go to contributors or members of the site to be divided up based on length of tenure and amount of input. You would immediately get a flood of users looking for a share of $20 mil or so.
  3. podunk press

    podunk press Active Member

    I thought this was going to be a story about community newspaper salaries.

    And I wouldn't have disagreed.
  4. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    I always thought that the working-for-free thing would be the demise of Wikipedia and blogs. I think that's kind of proven to be the case with blogs, no? I bet 99.9 percent of individual blogs fade into oblivion within a couple of posts. The Internet is a virtual graveyard of abandoned blogs.
  5. Brian Cook

    Brian Cook Member

    Most people who start blogs don't look at like them like they're jobs. A nonexistent barrier to entry means there are plenty of abandoned or ignored blogs but in the end they aren't the demise of internet publishing any more than the end of any one animal is the demise of a species.

    As for the article, Facebook and other social sites are not in the same league with the Huffington Post or other sites because the former traffics in news about your friends that has no competition or market outside of people you know and the other provides a Bleacher Report about politics. And the Silver link is fairly convincing that HP's free content is a relatively thin slice of their pageviews. Meanwhile, the bit at the end about how Carr's helping twitter but it isn't helping him is silly. If he hasn't raised his profile or stroked his ego or shown his paymasters how he's got 300k followers that's on him.


    I've got a totally different perspective on this whole thing. My blog was a generic blogger.com blog for a long time until the comments got too unwieldy and I wanted to shift to something more elaborate. A couple years ago I moved to Drupal and added a message board and a "diaries" section like you'd get at Kos or HuffPo to the already existing community, and now that user-generated section is 50% of the site's traffic. I've brought on a couple of consistent diary contributors as freelancers and have gotten a ton of content I think is worthwhile. Why can I do this but AnnArbor.com, or some other newspaper, can't or hasn't? The NYT wouldn't be able to do that and a lot of smaller papers probably wouldn't get enough wheat to make it worthwhile but there's an area where the "citizen journalist"* thing can add value to readers and the bottom line.

    *[not that anyone I'm not paying is doing any actual journalism. They are doing work that's interesting/funny/original.]
  6. SoCalScribe

    SoCalScribe Member

    Sh[quote author=Brian Cook
    *[not that anyone I'm not paying is doing any actual journalism. They are doing work that's interesting/funny/original.]

    Shouldn't you be failing to fight for a defensive rebound right about now?

    Actual journalism, of course, is never interesting or funny, much less original. Thanks for that winning insight.
  7. Charlie Brown

    Charlie Brown Member

    I'm not sure "Bleacher Report for politics" is how I'd describe Huffington Post.
  8. Michael_ Gee

    Michael_ Gee Well-Known Member

    Barry Ritzholz, the head of an investment firm and the author of a really great blog "The Big Picture" (no links, sorry) has a post this morning stating he will not allow his content to be used free of charge by aggregators or write for them and makes a convincing case doing so offers the writer no real benefits in terms of increased audience, influence, or any other ancillary contribution to financial success.
  9. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    I can see how twitter helps. I read more articles by David Carr & Gabriel Sherman because I follow them on Twitter than I would if I didn't.

    Twitter's great for quick thoughts and linking to your articles.

    But, just writing for free on sights like the Huffington Post or Bleacher Report? That's crap. You're not helping yourself and, by devaluing your own work, you're also devaluing the work of all writers.

    I hate to say it, and I understand the argument in favor of it, but it's the closest thing to being a scab that I can think of.
  10. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    I think there is a difference between writing something you feel (a story, an opinion) and letting others read it (for free) than doing some kind of actual work, interviews etc.
    I read the stuff on HuffPo and I've learned to pretty much ignore the columns which have all the same reasoning and logic (for better or worse) of what you would find here, only they have a famous name attached to them. The same goes for The Daily Caller. I shouldn't really expect insight on the Middle East from Alec Baldwin or Chuck Norris.
  11. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    If you don't value your content up front, it's tough to show it has value going forward.
  12. geddymurphy

    geddymurphy Member

    Interesting comment on this Nate Silver thread on HuffPo (which starts with an inaccurate correlation of comments to page views):


    In case you prefer not to follow the link -- the basic idea is that no one who kept a blog on Blogger felt the need to ask Google for money when that sale was made. And HuffPo gives you far more exposure than Blogger does.

    Another analogy I'd make -- do you get paid for appearing on a radio show? Or do you consent to the interview just to get your name out there?

    Not saying HuffPo's content is everyone's cup of tea -- I think they end up attracting a fair number of cranks (just ask scientists about the pseudo-scientists who've latched onto HuffPo to peddle their b.s. agendas). But the business model isn't totally outlandish.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page