Mostly Everything

The Narrow River of Content

Winthrop Yu, former head honcho of PC Magazine Philippines led me to this Forbes piece on how specialist blogs are stealing rich advertising from tech media – and I don’t just mean traditional tech publications, but their online counterparts also. In other words, if I were an advertiser, I’d actually see more value in putting ads in TechCrunch and Engadget than in CNET, PC Magazine and its online PC Mag website.

What?! Why the online counterparts? Because the surfing public is smarter now. They use popup ad blockers to get rid of annoying and unwanted ads that cram content into a funnel, you’d be forced to sprawl a 600 word article into 4 pages just to get more page views.

According to the article, Google Search revolutionized advertising, as searching for content in the form of products and services proved to bring in a sense of “demand” from the consumer and contextually targeting advertising to match content. Hence, Google AdSense is raking in tons of cash from just technology blogs alone.

In the “old model” of print, you’d need a publishing house and a printing press as well as your editorial, sales and marketing staff to run the business. On the web, you barely need an office. You don’t even need a sales team as the consumers themselves target ads for you via contextual search.

OK hold on. Before this post grows into a “new vs traditional media” rant, I kid you not, it isn’t. Let’s talk about traditional web sites.

Mostly Everything

Why Magazines are still out there


It is no secret that new media is not so slowly taking a bigger role in viral marketing efforts as well as being included in the business models of publishing companies. There is usually the “online version” of a publication that contains stuff that magazines cannot achieve such as running commentaries, reader to editorial conversations, and daily news updates.

But given all this, magazines are still out there – and for good reason too! (read: not just for your pet to poop on)

Not everything can be read on a blog. You won’t print out a blog entry to show your friends the latest camera or cellphone in the market. You’d show them the magazine or product catalog. In the same light, it is much easier to appreciate a two page spread or specially executed pages (triple folds or advertorial pop-ups with music) from the perspective of a print publication.

To read a blog, you need a computer. Or a PDA with a feed reader. You won’t really bring your laptop with wireless connection to the throne either (because if you do, then you’re really geeky and gross).

Quality Content. This is perhaps the main differentiator, at least for the more established titles. Blogs don’t require an editorial hierarchy. Magazines do. It helps ensure quality control, as well as making resources available to bag that next big story.

Like it or not, we’re still in some sort of bubble. Not everyone reads blogs or looks at the Internet to find pertinent information. They still resort to television, radio and print. I feel that for the entire trimedia to go fully digital, businesses have to collapse and generations should pass before any such revolution will occur.

There are some class A titles better suited for print. Great titles such as Esquire, GQ, and Tattler find some sort of comfort zone by being seen on the news stand and not purely online. It’s meant to be read, and maybe even read in public. It’s a status thing I guess.

Image taken from the Esquire Cover Gallery

Mostly Everything

A Guide: How To Use Technology To Survive Sudden Memory Loss

If a Haitian (specifically the one from Heroes) were to suddenly gag me from behind and erase my short term memory in a dramatic display of acting prowess, this is how I would try to spring back to remember the lost memories:

Prior to this occurrence, I would write down my email, social network and blog passwords somewhere where I would eventually chance upon within 24 hours, like the bottom of the lid of my toilet seat or something.

I would log into my Friendster account and view all the testimonials that people wrote. I’d contact them one by one with PMs with a message like “hey you wouldn’t believe this but I’m suffering from memory loss.” (If I accidentally sent it to an ex, she’d prolly slap me online and say “I’d prefer you stay lost!!!”)

I’d look into my LinkedIn profile to see who I’ve worked with in the past. Like that Darren Rowse guy.

I’d log into my Google account page and use the Google Web History tool to see what keywords I’ve typed in and what sites I visited for in the past several months. Have you tried this? It’s freaky. Google History records everything you’ve ever searched for on your browser.

I will check my blog and Technorati trackbacks to see what type of people read my stuff. I will read my blog entries from day 1.

Assuming my phone was dumped, I would buy a new phone and sync it with my Plaxo Online contact list to restore my database of phone contacts.

I would also keep a menagerie of files on my Mozy account. Then I’d restore files I found pertinent to my desktop. Speaking of which, I recently let my .Mac account expire and got myself a Dreamhost hosting account instead. It makes so much more sense in the long run and costs less too if you think about the offerings. So if you have my .Mac email address, it won’t work starting next month.

Lastly, I’d still probably buy a Macintosh 🙂

Well, doing these won’t restore all my memories, but it does give me a big springboard to finding out what happened to me. Technology isn’t very forgiving in these times. It’s actually scary. Anything to add?

Mostly Everything

Why Twitter is More Interesting Than Your Blog: The Steve Rubel PR Nightmare

When a new service like Twitter is launched, it doesn’t take a long time before we start seeing a lot of controversies with real world relationships. The traditional blogging medium (I can’t believe I just called blogging “traditional”) allows you to organize yourself into one coherent thought bubble and post what you have to say, filtered of all the things that you wanted to say but didn’t.

The case may be different with Twitter, which by nature lets you send thoughts in “packets” which means that you are more spontaneous in your thoughts, and thus reduces the chance of being prudent. Twitter, undeniably takes a more laid back approach to blogging, that I have no qualms of calling it the new personal blog platform.

Mostly Everything

ReviewMe and how it affects the status quo of stuff

There has been a lot of buzz in the blogosphere with the launch of ReviewMe, a product from the guys that brought you Text Link Ads. What astonishes me most was how a lot of bloggers have posted about this rather quickly in the past 6 hours. And the answer to this is quite obvious – they are being financially compensated for it.

As a writer for print publications, I see nothing new with the concept of paying people for writing product reviews or features. But since the true nature of blogs are hard to discern (am I blogging for fun or for profit?), one has to disclose that he or she is being paid to post something. The concept is pretty similar to being paid to work versus being paid to do something you love. (Don’t you wish you had that job that paid you to travel around the world?) In both cases what differs is the orientation of the individual towards his work – both statements refer to “being paid to do your job” but there is a difference in the person’s disposition in receiving his compensation. Thus, if we apply the same example to blogs, someone who is being paid to post falls under the latter description – being paid to do something you love.