I’d like to share something with you. Something that has made me very happy. Something, in fact, about sheep. This sheep, in particular:
And so, the Murdoch plan for content charging begins to become clear:
As newspapers across the country struggle with declining readership and
advertising revenue, News Corp. executives have been meeting in recent
weeks with publishers about forming a consortium that would charge for
news distributed online and on portable devices — and potentially stem
the rising tide of red ink.
So, it’s a consortium model. And that’s interesting, because it runs the risk of running afoul of cartel legislation, and because it immediatly creates a significant dividing line between the new low cost, free to air business who live and die by links and engagement and the old high cost, paid content businesses, who huddle together behind a paywall designed to protect their traditional business model.
Steve Yelvington has posted an absolute must-read entry on his blog, where he breaks down the two major types of visitors and the ways you should serve them:
The beat blog focuses on the small circle, offering speed, depth and conversation among the reporter and people with high interest in the subject matter. While regular users are the primary beneficiaries, there is a secondary benefit to the casual user: the reporter gets better at his or her job. Better leads, better feedback, better ideas can lead to more interesting journalism.
And then there’s the topic page, which is what your less engaged, occasional visitor wants. Go read.
This video has been making the rounds of the company this morning:
The pleasing thing is that it wasn’t me that started it, as it would have been 6 months ago. The times, they are a’changing…
Good piece of analysis from danah:
Twitter – like many emergent genres of social media – is structured around networks of people interacting with people they know or find interesting. Those who are truly performing to broad audiences (e.g., “celebs”, corporations, news entities, and high-profile blogger types) are consciously crafting consumable content that doesn’t require actually having an intimate engagement with the person to appreciate. Yet, the vast majority of Twitter users are there to maintain social relations, keep up with friends and acquaintances, follow high-profile users, and otherwise connect. It’s all about shared intimacy that is of no value to a third-party ear who doesn’t know the person babbling.
Perfect for showing the sceptic that falls back on the inanity argument.
This has been said many times, and in many ways, but Dave Winer has put it very clearly, and in a way traditional publishing organisations should take to heart:
A long time ago I discovered this fundamental rule of the net — People come back to places that send them away. Places like Google, Yahoo, Craigslist, Youtube, even Twitter. These are the mainstays. You go there to get somewhere else. Sites that try to suck you in and hold you there, no matter how cleverly, go away. While it may seem like a good approach at first, long-term it’s a losing strategy.