While the publishing industry is facing so many laid-off plans, it has never been easier to write, publish, promote and make a living as a content creator. If the content is what really matters, then maybe it’s time to consider another model where Information — and the writers behind — don’t need to be only centrally distributed
Reading — and especially writing — was once a privilege of the elite. In the medieval ages, the ability to create and distribute books was in the hands of very few. By the 1500s, however, technology had begun to democratize access to the information contained within them. This revolution not only brought books to more people, but it also brought more writers — philosophers, scientists, others — and other reading materials — like pamphlets, posters, newspapers, and novels — to the world, and in doing so, changed the culture.
With internet disrupting Benjamin Day advertising-based model for the distribution of the written word. On one hand, the media & news industry has been in terrible shape for dozens of years. No need to further dissect this. But on the other hand — this is the reason why I am writing this piece — it has opened up new opportunities for media producers and information. The technology needed to produce information comes with almost no cost other than your time today. Publishing tools are accessible, most of the time for free. Social media has allowed individuals to amass large awareness at almost no cost.
On the importance of Content
If we believe the content, when it adds value to people's lives, is what really matters, then maybe it’s time to consider another model where Information — and the writers behind — don’t need to be only centrally distributed. A model where individuals, journalist, writers, analyst etc. can make a living out of their media, whether it’s a small indie magazine, a podcast, vlog, a newsletter or each of these at the same time.
I completely disagree with the statement that people don’t want to pay for information anymore. Just look at recent venture. The Gentlewoman has been an incredible success and it’s almost based on Penny Martin personality and taste. The Athletic recently pass the 600k readers. Business of Fashion just closes a serie B funding round with 35k subscribers + 650k subscribers to its newsletter. Ben Thompson is making a living with Stratechery....
You get my point: People will pay money if you deliver something that is original if you do it with integrity, and if they can’t find elsewhere for free.
What does it mean to add value to people’s lives?
You provide people with information that is useful for their work / they can make money from
- Or you are people's main source of information.
- Or you speak to people's emotions and passions, providing them with something incredibly specific they can’t find elsewhere.
And if you do either of those with style by providing community, experiences and authenticity.
To every writer, journalist, freelance, analyst alone or together, find a subject you love and that people will eventually love too. It’s about super fans — 1000 to 2000 people that actively read or listen and get you the price of a coffee/month — have you seen the coffee price nowadays? — is enough to make a living and sustain your publication.
Journalist, writers & contributors of all kind, unite and builds the next generation of media!