Zeynep Tufekci wrote “Spotify but for the Titanic: A Proposal for the Future of News and Publishing” yesterday to offer an alternative for online media to save themselves from the invaisive and disturbing advertisement models. She offers Spotify-like system for journalists to make money and create a stable enviroment.
This all sounds really good at first glance but there are some really big issues (at least for me) I can’t wrap my head around.
- Centralization Problem: We don’t want Facebook, Google or other stacks become more powerful, especially when it comes to publishing. But creating a place for all journalism has to deal with all the problems about centralization. For example, who’s going to make the big decisions like who will be the part of this or not? Are they going to censor stuff? If so, how will they decide what to censor or not? Will this system promises us to give everyone a place or will there be limits?
- Power of Big Media: Spotify-for-Journalism will surely help a lot for mainstream media channels. But they’re going to have lots of power in this system, according to alternative ones and I’m 100% sure that they’re not going to use it for what’s good for all. How this system will stop it and create a balance between them?
- Making Money: We’ve already seen that Spotify doesn’t really works for indie or alternative musicians to make sone decent money, and not even really gives something decent for mainstream ones, but they already earn well. And we all know that the media who needs money is the alternative or small ones. And this system only helps the big ones, at some point at least. I don’t think something like that will help us to save diverse and free media. Only makes sure the big ones will stay alive one way or another. And to be honest, they already have enough plans for themselves to save itself.
Those are the ones comes to my mind at the first place. We all want writers, journalists and everyone works in this area gets paid but I’m not really sure if this is the way we should choose. I’m sure that advertisement isn’t the one but maybe we should look for some way that also makes sure that we’re not creating another “for every X you’ll need” stuff. We need to find a way that will save us from centralization. If we’re not offering newspapers or magazines to merge together to save themselves, we shouldn’t do that on internet too. We need more and diverse stuff, not everything in one place things. That’ll only help who’s already powerful right now.