December 06, 2005

Why don't the media "get it"?

Umair Haque :

I mean, it's the end of 2005. Isn't it intuitive and obvious how the media industry could utilize Wikipedia, blogs, and podcasts (etc) to revolutionize their strategies and business models?

Bubblegeneration Strategy Lab

Clearly it ought to be. But isn't.

Why? Lack of creativity? Lack of any business model from the perspective of the media companies?

I'd (charitably) assume the second. Although, it's so cheap to dabble with this stuff that media companies ought to be able to afford to do some experiments.

Instead of writing about how lousy and untrustworthy Wikipedia is, why not :

  • A "howler of the week" competition for the reader who finds the dumbest (or most egregious) error in Wikipedia
  • Make sure Wikipedia (and Yellowikis) have accurate, up-to-date information about your company and journalists

  • "Adopt" other important Wikipedia pages. Pay someone to look at them occasionally and correct errors. Write about the process and invite your readers to contribute suggestions

  • Create a whole farm of wikis on your own site for your readers. Don't try to do news or editorial in these, but create wiki-like catalogues about less controversial subjects : eg. description of local bands if you're a city; about gardening or wine or fashion if you're a lifestyle sort of paper; about soap opera characters if that's the kind of rag you are.

  • A wiki-like place for readers to suggest stories and give leads on things that should be investigated and written about.

  • Reinvent your internal workflow process as a wiki. Maybe it can be publicly readable and commentable

  • Train reporters to use wiki-like personal organizers so they can more easily keep track of the context of what they're writing about.

And the above are just wiki-related ideas. There are even more things you can do with blogs, RSS, podcasts, OPML, attention etc. Not to mention the cross-overs between them.
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