Introduction to the article series “New Possibilities of Digital Media: Some Thoughts from Readers’ perspective”
Media got problems. We need to think about it, not solely from our own point of view, but from the perspective of our most important customers, the readers.
Everybody know that media industry got serious problems. Old media, no matter printed, radio or TV, are losing audiences year after year, and most of the so-called digital media still can not find stable and profitable business models. The industry tried their best to find out what happened, and how to solve the problems. and no one could say they have the answers to save the industry.
I do not dare to provide any answers to save the industry here. On the contrary, I would like to provide some of my thoughts on possible ways, by re-thinking from the respective of our readers.
Audience were absent
As a seasoned editor for both printed and digital media, years of experience on community management, and the educational background of anthropology, I realized shockingly the fact that most of the discussions on the fate of media were mainly stem from our own point of view. There were so few discussions concerning the most important customers to the media industry, the readers.
In other words, we have ignored our readers, and that would be the core problem of all problems for the media industry. I don’t think we could find any possible solution that could make media industry great and prosper again, without thinking about our readers.
So, I will share my thoughts here on the problems and possible ways the media industry could go, from the way readers consuming and considering about us. I have finished them in Taiwan Chinese and shared in my another Medium account previously, and these articles will be re-written in English and posted here in the coming couple of months, focusing on the following topics:
Part 1: The real problems
- Why old-school media failed? Why they are doomed to be fail?
- Why most of the new media failed to find sustainable new business models?
Part 2: The Analysis of various income sources for media
- The corrupted and doomed digital advertisements
- The good and the bad: sponsored content
- Is subscription the savior of the publishers?
- Reward by readers: Does it work?
- The effect and limitations for media on crowd funding
Part 3: Restart, from the perspective of our readers
- A closer look on the changes of our readers
- The paradigm shifts for readership: changes of categorization
- The new role for media, and the new business models
- How to build a big media organization with the new paradigm?
- Misunderstanding of content marketing
- Do we need social/content services based on blockchain?
- Case study: the sponsorship model of Daring Fireball
Besides the above topics, I would like to share something about this series in the first place.
The original articles of this series were written in Taiwan Chinese language for Taiwanese readers, so some of the case studies and context will need to be fixed here for readers outside Taiwan. I will try my best to convert those instances, but as you know, culture gaps will always be there, since English is not my native language.
Medium paid members only
Except this introduction, all my works published here will be limited to existing Medium paid members. I strongly encourage you to be a Medium paid member since you can read *all* member-only contents on Medium, for just $5 per month. That’s an insanely great deal for anyone who seek for meaningful and inspiring contents.
This is my first time to write long articles in English, so there must be a lot mistakes or confusions. I welcome critics, questions, corrections, and discussions, any kinds of feedbacks. So please don’t hesitate to leave your comments. And you can find me via my email address: email@example.com, if you have any idea and want to contact with me directly.
Thank you for reading this in advance, and please share it to your friends if you think they should read it.
— Originally published here in Taiwan Chinese.