Sunday, September 2, 2018

The Frankenmedia and their monster

Trump is rather successful in his attacks on the media.... at least where is followers are concerned. Why is that?

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His attacks work because the media is in a deep crisis.

The crisis is not there because the media is reporting fake news or lying about Trump. It is because the media lost the most critical component of it's business: Trust.

If you do not have trust, the veracity of the news becomes irrelevant.

The trust was lost with the transformation from subscriber to advertiser financed media. It was not lost within a blink of an eye but it eroded slowly away.

The erosion accelerated with the digital transformation. The web was luring with additional advertising income with (allegedly) little effort and next to no distribution costs.

The money came not for the news (where truth mattered) but for attention (where it mattered less and less). Every click-bait headline was a pebble of trust tumbling down the hill of media credibility.

A lot of media companies complained about Google, Facebook & Co. One of their catchlines was "For Google the consumer is not a customer but the product." At that point, it was long true for the main stream media itself and they knew it. But they were riding a tiger and afraid of letting it go.

If I pay a company, I usually trust it. Otherwise it would not receive money from me. But by giving something for "free", the media already sows the seeds of mistrust.

By trying to lure my attention instead of tickling my interest, they loose some more.

By presenting advertisement as a news article, they are sticking a knife into the back of their trust.

By giving idiots space during prime time and on page one, they are kneecapping the trust into them.

Trump is not victim of the media crisis as he paints himself. Instead he is a symptom. He facilitated his rise by exploiting the media crisis. Trump was and is creating money for the media. They make money thanks to him. But that money comes with the stench of a poison pill.

In fact Trump is like Frankenstein's monster that turns on his creator. The media is giving him the attention he uses to attack (and destroy) them.

The monster got smart. Instead of waiting for the mob with torches and pitchforks, it is gathering and leading it.

Media beware! Your monster does no longer need you...