Buzzfeed is currently coming under fire from various creators: Akilah Hughes claims that Buzzfeed plagiarised her videos, Gaby Dunn speaks up against the no-compete clause that led to 2 colleagues being fired for appearing in another websseries (response by Buzzfeed Motion Pictures head Ze Frank), and Kat Blaque talks about the exploitation of intellectual labour from marginalized people for Buzzfeed content.
"I think now is the perfect time to start (or restart) a local digital news operation. There are few greater gifts in journalism than a blank sheet of paper." In CJR, editor and entrepreneur Jim Brady (@jimbrady) on why and how now might finally be the time for local journalism in the USA to find a business model that works. [more inside]
In a sea of imperfect options, this is the one I feel best about! We made something great for three years, and now we’re going to go do something else. The only regret I have is that Bustle will outlive us and I will never be able to icily reject a million-dollar check from Bryan Goldberg, but that’s pretty much it. - The Toast will be closing on July 1st. [more inside]
Netflix and Thrill - does the streaming TV company face a rocky future, or are its traditional competitors, desperatly trying to pin down its ratings, just suffering from jealously?
The Rumpus is not of the same world as The Huffington Post, and therein lies the problem with this conversation: somewhere along the line, in an important and valuable attempt to be pay writers better, the issue of what any given publication could legitimately afford was thrown out the window. Paying writers = the right side of history, period. If you don’t have the financial backing of venture capital or a man with a lot of money, you shouldn’t even exist. Your continued dedication to existence is in fact offensive to the very writers you claim to nurture. [...] I’m sensitive to this issue as a website that was unable to pay most of its writers from our inception in 2009 until late 2013. We didn’t have the money to pay them, that’s just a fact. The money did not exist, we could not summon it from the sky; we’re lesbians, we inherently lack rich husbands. Maybe that means we should’ve given up, I’m not sure, but that makes me really frightened for the future of independent journalism by and for populations even more disenfranchised than our own. How can we advocate for both disenfranchised writers and disenfranchised publishers? Because the thing is… Not paying your writers SUCKS.- Autostraddle: The “Who Pays Writers” Conversation Needs a Little Nuance
"They Don’t Give a Damn about Governing... Once allied with but now increasingly hostile to the Republican hierarchy, conservative media is shaping the party’s agenda in ways that are impeding Republicans’ ability to govern and to win presidential elections."
The Onion Is Not a Joke [The Atlantic] How a fake newspaper is turning into a real media empire.
Producer Michael Shamberg Wants to 'Invent the Future' With BuzzFeed Motion Pictures - "I don't think there's ever been a Hollywood R&D model like we have here." (previously 1,2,3) [more inside]
Demand Media, once valued higher than the New York Times, is seeing a rapid decrease in profits because of Google changing its search algorithms. Does this mean the beginning of the end for "content farms"?
Aereo is a web service that allows subscribers to watch broadcast TV on their computers or mobile devices. The broadcast networks are furious. Aereo is ready for a PR fight, and is currently winning the legal battle. Variety wonders: Is Aereo Actually a Good Thing? [more inside]
The U.S. has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Apple and five of the largest publishers, alleging a conspiracy to rig the pricing of e-books. Simon & Schuster, Hachette and HarperCollins have agreed to settle, though Macmillan, Penguin and Apple continue to contest the charges. Some background from WIRED: Bigger Than Agency, Bigger Than E-Books: The Case Against Apple and Publishers
The poor in Ethiopia are often unable to buy newspapers, so they 'rent' papers for 20-30 minutes at a time from local entrepreneurs.
... one wonders why [Goldman Sachs] and [JP Morgan] were so eager to provide "rescue" financings to virtually the entire distressed media space: both companies knew too well that sooner or later they would end up with full equity control over essentially the most coveted industry: thousands of TV stations, radio channels, newspaper and magazines. (via) (previously)
"When copies are free, you need to sell things which cannot be copied." Kevin Kelly (previously) describes eight "generative" values that increase in value as the price tag on making copies goes down. He also has some advice for creators who want to make money off the long tail. Via
Senators seek to reverse FCC ruling A bipartisan coalition of Senators intends to overturn the FCC's latest decree ordering greater corporate media consolidation. "I'm convinced, just noodling around, that we can get a majority vote and report that out (of committee) and get some action on the floor of the Senate," Hollings told reporters. Anyone else surprised?
Media Torrent: ""I think this is one of many weird phenomena that contributes to a national attention deficit disorder."The crawl -- that stream of info-morsels and promotional hooks that seemed so urgent right after Sept. 11, but now seems so annoying and distracting -- seems to carry Gitlin's point with it as it creeps across the screen." Is this a real problem, or is it just the old guys not hip to the kids' video world? (via i want media)
The Big Ten infographics that accompany The Nation's latest issue on big media conglomerates lays out just how big they are (maximize your browser for the viacom and AOLTW ones, there's a lot of small type in there).
What is the future of online news. Will subscription eventually win through? Is there a viable business model that will allow independent publishers (such as Salon) to survive, or will we see further media consolidation? Where does blogging fit into this spectrum?
Four sites account for half of Web surfing 'Even more significantly, the number of companies controlling 60 percent of all U.S. surfing time plummeted from 110 to 14, according to Jupiter Media Metrix, which released the survey Monday.'
So we think we're free? Bill Moyers tells us that we're in the grip of the mega-corporate media who know how to lavishly butter their own bread. And if we like jam? Too bad.