Monthly Archives: September 2006

More about blogger power

[Keyword: , , ]. Another fascinating piece about the rise of blogger power – The Guardian reports on Bill Clinton meeting with prominent liberal bloggers to give them a ‘pat on the back’:

“Clinton told the group that over the past two years he had become an avid reader, and that he now included blog posts in his daily news cuttings service. For the bloggers, toiling away in their front rooms, it was heady stuff. “Here I was with a group of my friends and colleagues, meeting with one of our nation’s presidents because our small, do-it-yourself political operation had drawn his attention,” writes Chris Bowers on the MyDD blog. “I mean, this is largely work I have completed from the bedroom of my apartment in West Philly.””

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Citizen photographers beware

[Keyword: , ]. Salutary piece on about a snap sold by Scoopt which turned out not to have been taken by the person selling it – but also was already widely available online. Here’s some points from the piece:

“‘Citizen journalists’ – as distinct from professional photographers – don’t always appreciate that content can be commercially devalued by dissemination on the web. But nor do they necessarily care. If you capture a breaking news story, you might want to share the story with the widest possible audience as quickly as possible, with financial gain a distant consideration or of no concern at all. But can you do both? Can you share and sell your content? Does a copyrighted picture that’s all over the web still have value in print, or a video submitted to YouTube have value when broadcast?

“Perhaps surprisingly, our experience says yes. In the Zidane case, we licensed the images several times over in print despite widespread and simultaneous appearance electronically on blogs and football sites. Picture editors could have lifted them for free but didn’t. I find that encouraging. Of course, it’s in part because we made their lives easy by pushing the content to them in an industry-standard manner, but also (and I hope I’m not being too naïve in saying this) I think it’s because most picture editors, so many of whom are themselves photographers, would rather spend their budgets fairly than exploit amateur snappers.”

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Chris Andersen’s views on the new publishing landscape

[Keyword: , , ]. The latest Press Gazette interview is worth a read: it’s with Chris Andersen, author of The Long Tail – and before you groan “not another Long Tail article”, this interview actually steers clear of the long over-exposed theory, instead offering some very refreshing thoughts on the media landscape. Here’s some choice quotes:

“There are some who require you to log in; there are some that require you to pay for content. Our sense is that if you do that, you will get some revenues, but you will not be part of the conversation. You will not have access to that extraordinary word-of-mouth effect out there in the wide-open world.”


“Part of our job is making things better and part of our jobs is predicting demand. And every time we get it wrong. Not entirely wrong, but every month, there’s some story that I didn’t expect to be popular that turned out to be popular and some story that I thought would be popular that turned out not to be so popular.
“Maybe my hit-rate is better than others, but it’s certainly not perfect. The lesson right now of the long-tail world is that you now have increasingly powerful tools to measure what people want. Put it all out there and let the market sort it out.
“Obviously we look at the blogosphere to generate new ideas, to tap into ascendant people and ideas.
“This gives us a fantastic information-gathering exercise. But that’s available to all, that’s not exclusive to print. The other aspect is whether we can use this technology of dialogue, of conversation with your readers to make your product better.”

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