We encountered this topic before: Media are changing. And Umair Haque stays in Manifesto-Mood: After the Generation-M Manifesto a few weeks ago, he now published the Nichepaper-Manifesto.
The main thesis: It’s not editors who make media and newspapers profitable, but readers. Not only because they buy all that stuff, but because they create the environment, the audience – and actually the topics themselves.
Haque lists 8 rules of how to deal with this situation as well as 4 types of new papers (online or print) who comply with them and respect the relevance of their readers and environment.
I love it.
It will be a long way to go. The old media business model – charging againg and again for the same old crap that
1) has been copied and stolen from somewhere
2) contains typos
3) contains a lot of mistakes in sense and meaning
4) has never been understood by it´s author and
5) has the main function to impress stupid advertisers simply works to well.
Both, readers and advertisers, obviously love to be fooled. It’s simply more comfortable to face the same wrong bullshit ever and ever again – you don’t have to accomodate to something new.
The topics 1), 2) and 3) are probably european, more specifically german-language media and most definitely austrian media problems. Media business is mainly copying – and copying badly.
# 4) is the downside of so called professionalism in journalism: Some editors assume they have writing skills (well, look at 1), 2), 3)) and that this is already enough to qualify for that job. So they don’t care about their topic – never learnt anything, never worked anywhere, and researching and investigating – well, the advanced editors do have a look at Google; the others copy from yesterdays german, british or american news.
And number 5 is what really makes me wonder most: How can advertiser fatheads really pay huge amounts of money for this? It’s not only bad content – it’s also about poor monitoring, no tracking and hardly any result controlling.
Respecting and working with the power of readers, participators who shape the topic and carry it on is an invaluable capital.
And it’s actually incomprehensible, why using (or advertising in) online media should be put into question at all.
PS: Here’s a keynote (“Constructive Capitalism”) of Umair Haque.