TechCrunch takes a pop at Demand/aol’s fast food media, yet shows little grace

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Missed this yesterday

http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/12/13/the-end-of-hand-crafted-content/

Essentially Arrington takes a real pop at Demand and aol who are constructing a huge amount of content purely based on what people are searching for and suprise surprise, making lots of money out of it.

Contrast this with old media which is basically going though the equivalent of an industrial revolution.

It is worth mentioning too that many people on both sides of the Atlantic have written similar stories especially relating to aol and Demand. So he isn’t really saying anything new here.

PersonalIy I think Arrington lays it on a bit thick. TechCrunch has on many occassions chased easy readers with sensationalist headlines, search engine friendly articles and other media tricks. Not that I have an issue with this as all online media does it. They wouldn’t survive if they didn’t. However if you are going to take the moral high ground make sure you really are clean.

Secondly his comments about about aol’s journalists really stink

‘Hiring a bunch of people who couldn’t keep their old media jobs and don’t have the stomach to go out on their own’ that is so condescending. From bitter experience I know how hard it is for a journalist to make money from online content in the UK. Also I have many talented friends who are finding it very hard to make freelance journalism stack up. It is bloody tough out there.

He concludes

‘Forget fair and unfair, right and wrong. This is simply happening. The disruptors are getting disrupted, and everyone has to adapt to it or face the consequences. Hand crafted content is dead. Long live fast food content, it’s here to stay.’

Ultimately I am sure he is right, but just as TV has dumbed down to give people what they really want, so now will online news. And if companies are responding to what people are searching for then maybe we only have ourselves to blame.

Where this leaves old media, or even UK indie media for that matter, is anyone’s guess…

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