In an article my Nat Ives of Advertising Age (article link, more available here), it seems the Old Media gatekeepers are trying to hold on to their monopoly – by lobbying Google to alter its search algorithm to favor their content over New Media content.
Many publishers resent the criteria Google uses to pick top results, starting with the original PageRank formula that depended on how many links a page got. But crumbling ad revenue is lending their push more urgency; this is no time to show up on the third page of Google search results. And as publishers renew efforts to sell some content online, moreover, they’re newly upset that Google’s algorithm penalizes paid content.
Fortunately, not everyone agrees
Not everyone supports the publishers’ push. “It’s the plaintive cry of people who have lost their monopoly trying to scrounge a little of it back,” said Michael Wolff, Vanity Fair columnist and founder of Newser, which aggregates and links news from around the web. “Sometimes it’s true that you’d rather get what The New York Times has to say about something rather than a host of bloggers. But more interestingly it’s not always true. And it is in fact less and less true.”
Yep, the free market can suck sometimes, can’t it? Here is a free lesson Old Media – from me to you…do you have a pen and paper handy? You have tried changing the look, you’ve cut costs in materials, lowered pricing, given away free subscriptions…none of it is working. Advertising revenue, subscription revenue, and readership are falling by the wayside. There is one thing you have not tried – changing your content. Everyone in bloggerville knows why your readership is going to the New Media, but you dunderheads still scratch your heads and try a different font. IT IS THE LEFT-WING SLANT YOU PUT ON EVERYTHING YOU WRITE. This country is not populated by a majority of the left-wing kooks you cater to. The majority is decidedly Right-of-center. Just because you managed to get Obama into the White House does not change basic demographics. As soon as people figured out that your content was slanted left, and had an alternative, they ran towards it.
Shift your stories to the Right. I guarantee that you will pick up readers and ad revenue within 60 days. It might be painful, you might have to pink slip some of your more left-leaning reporters and editors, but your companies would survive…and isn’t that the most important thing?
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