Africasgateway.com

why Google is not my friend

motho · 8 · 9400

motho

  • quixotic dreamer
  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 1942
    • REP: +18/-23
    • Gender:Female
    • View Profile
    • blog

this thread is inspired by this piece http://tiny.cc/Gr82c and I know we have a lot of writers and journalists on the site so i thought it relevant to post it here, pls read it when you have time (even if its not in 2010) and the comments especially.

what I want to ask is whether the people on AG who write for a living agree with the piece (a**uming you have read it) ???

extract from the piece:

"The internet is business-model neutral; it's like the postal service, or the telephone — all it does is put suppliers in touch with consumers. The revolutionary new quality it adds is that it cuts out middlemen — if a supplier can make their existence known to a consumer, there's no need for wholesaler warehouses, distributors, and a pavement-pounding sales force.

Enter Google.

(You knew I was going to say that name sooner or later, didn't you?)

Google's revenue stream is predicated on their success as an advertising company first and foremost. Remember DoubleClick? They're part of Google.

Google's business model is to monetize all internet content by slapping advertising on it and positioning themselves as the most convenient find-everything-at-your-fingertips gateway. The more high-quality content, the better; hence the drive towards free email, digitizing books, syndicating blogs via Google Reader, and so on. If all content is available over the internet via Google, then all content is monetizable. Content producers who expect to be paid by end-users for access to their content are inevitably going to come into conflict with Google, because this restricts the number of end-users who will see the content, and hence contribute to Google's revenue stream.

We all like free content. And we all like to be able to find things conveniently on the web. But I'm increasingly having a problem with the "information wants to be free" viewpoint — because it ain't necessarily so, depending on how you define "information" and "free". Bandwidth is in the process of becoming so cheap it might as well be free, at least by the standards of the 1990s, let alone any earlier decade. Information is another matter, though. Not all information is created equal, and the cost of compiling and producing something new is disproportionately high. I write books for a living, and take roughly 6-12 months per book. If I can't earn a living at it — if you wave a hypothetical magic wand and make all information free, thereby disintegrating the publishing, music, and commercial content industries overnight — I'd probably not stop writing fiction but I'd have to do something else to earn a living, and therefore I'd have less time to write fiction, and consequently you'd have fewer of my stories to download."
"your real calibre is measured by your consideration and tolerance of others"


rob_one

  • AG Veteran
  • *****
    • Posts: 3597
    • REP: +27/-42
    • Gender:Male
  • Silverback Jewrilla
    • View Profile
    • 20/20 HIP-HOP RADIO
Props Motho. This was a good read. Not even Colin could complain.

It's a good analysis - someone thinking clearly about internet content and monetisation for a change. I do agree that not all content should be free; if it's good - I mean really good - then you should be prepared to pay a little something for it.

Then again, as a full-time writer I'm biased. I did like this:

Quote
Here's a hint: if I wanted to spend my time marketing my books I'd have gone into marketing. I'm a writer. Every hour spent on marketing activities is an hour spent not writing. Ditto editing, proofreading, commissioning cover art, and so on. This is what I have publishers for. It's called "division of labour", and it's why self-publishing — unless you're an instinctive sales/marketing genius — is a Really Bad Idea™ for most writers.
20/20 HIP-HOP RADIO

http://2020.mypodcast.com
Recharged Radio - http://www.rechargedradio.com
The South African - http://www.southafrican.co.uk
My Own Shit - http://www.robboffard.com


motho

  • quixotic dreamer
  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 1942
    • REP: +18/-23
    • Gender:Female
    • View Profile
    • blog
Props Motho. This was a good read. Not even Colin could complain.

It's a good analysis - someone thinking clearly about internet content and monetisation for a change. I do agree that not all content should be free; if it's good - I mean really good - then you should be prepared to pay a little something for it.

Then again, as a full-time writer I'm biased. I did like this:

Quote
Here's a hint: if I wanted to spend my time marketing my books I'd have gone into marketing. I'm a writer. Every hour spent on marketing activities is an hour spent not writing. Ditto editing, proofreading, commissioning cover art, and so on. This is what I have publishers for. It's called "division of labour", and it's why self-publishing — unless you're an instinctive sales/marketing genius — is a Really Bad Idea™ for most writers.


yeah i liked that part as well. Everyone loves a good writer, even an average one for that matter. but no one is willing to pay. It only gets worse with Google-mania. Newsrooms downsizing, free content on the net and writers lose major  :(
"your real calibre is measured by your consideration and tolerance of others"


the panic!

  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 1817
    • REP: +26/-28
    • View Profile
Quote
Here's a hint: if I wanted to spend my time marketing my books I'd have gone into marketing. I'm a writer. Every hour spent on marketing activities is an hour spent not writing. Ditto editing, proofreading, commissioning cover art, and so on. This is what I have publishers for. It's called "division of labour", and it's why self-publishing — unless you're an instinctive sales/marketing genius — is a Really Bad Idea™ for most writers.

i don't know. i don't think there's anything wrong with marketing/promoting yourself, independently. i don't understand this part.  isn't that the same as saying i'm a musician. "if I wanted to spend my time marketing my music/crew/album I'd have gone into marketing"?
« Last Edit: January 21, 2010, 11:47:55 AM by the panic! »


The KWEDZA HOD

  • Producer
  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 2280
    • REP: +23/-26
    • View Profile
    • Rebbi Muzik
Nice read motho, I do agree with Rob, if content is really good, then one must be prepared to pay!
*not that I would, would steal a download, but would be nice known you downloadin good expensive content*


Jokes :-)


motho

  • quixotic dreamer
  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 1942
    • REP: +18/-23
    • Gender:Female
    • View Profile
    • blog
Quote
Here's a hint: if I wanted to spend my time marketing my books I'd have gone into marketing. I'm a writer. Every hour spent on marketing activities is an hour spent not writing. Ditto editing, proofreading, commissioning cover art, and so on. This is what I have publishers for. It's called "division of labour", and it's why self-publishing — unless you're an instinctive sales/marketing genius — is a Really Bad Idea™ for most writers.

i don't know. i don't think there's anything wrong with marketing/promoting yourself, independently. i don't understand this part.  isn't that the same as saying i'm a musician. "if I wanted to spend my time marketing my music/crew/album I'd have gone into marketing"?

there is nothing wrong with marketing urself. but not everyone is good at promoting themselves, that is why there are publishers agents. i think the current climate of "free" for all creates the kind of environment where writers feel they should be promoting their word (blogs, twitter etc) instead of only concentrating on the writng
"your real calibre is measured by your consideration and tolerance of others"


the panic!

  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 1817
    • REP: +26/-28
    • View Profile
Quote
Here's a hint: if I wanted to spend my time marketing my books I'd have gone into marketing. I'm a writer. Every hour spent on marketing activities is an hour spent not writing. Ditto editing, proofreading, commissioning cover art, and so on. This is what I have publishers for. It's called "division of labour", and it's why self-publishing — unless you're an instinctive sales/marketing genius — is a Really Bad Idea™ for most writers.

i don't know. i don't think there's anything wrong with marketing/promoting yourself, independently. i don't understand this part.  isn't that the same as saying i'm a musician. "if I wanted to spend my time marketing my music/crew/album I'd have gone into marketing"?

there is nothing wrong with marketing urself. but not everyone is good at promoting themselves, that is why there are publishers agents. i think the current climate of "free" for all creates the kind of environment where writers feel they should be promoting their word (blogs, twitter etc) instead of only concentrating on the writng

but at the same time, not everyone can walk up to a publishing house and acquire a book deal. in terms of aspiring writers and other artists, the internet is one of the most important tools at one's disposal, in my view, when it comes ftogetting material out there and also, perhaps attracting the attention of a publisher.

people must adapt. there's no good or bad in this thing. his goals are making money and getting his material out there. he must find a way he can use the internet to do this. that's all, i think.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2010, 02:02:55 PM by the panic! »


motho

  • quixotic dreamer
  • AG Elite Member
  • *****
    • Posts: 1942
    • REP: +18/-23
    • Gender:Female
    • View Profile
    • blog
adapt or perish? @ Panic  :)
"your real calibre is measured by your consideration and tolerance of others"