Team Murder No Brain No Headache.

18Nov/06Off

When Painted Into A Corner Shoot Yourself In The Foot As A Measure Of Defense

I'm probably not the only who thinks that a plan to use popular media to form a bottleneck for the flow of information is a measure of desperation. The modest proposal is here and actually uses the term 'embargo' as part of the argument. This would all be fine and semi-understandable if the majority of newspapers produced more content than redistributed AP/Reuters/blah blah blah to fill up column inches around advertising. What lacks the ability to compel isn't the dead tree format but the fact that most sources of news don't offer anything distinct from any of the other sources. The eventual outcome of this might be something akin to what Wal-Mart has done to the department store market. You cannot hold things back from potential buyers and count on this strategy to protect your product forever. There is always a player with deep pockets waiting in the wings to pick up the folks you left behind and feed them slickly wrapped crap for less than you can possibly afford to give up for. There are always faster gunfighters and there are always cheaper whores. While the irony would be satisfying the creation of a mega-USA Today doesn't hold very much appeal. Remember what newspapers were like before the emergence of USA Today? I'm guessing not but it was a hell of a lot more impressive and diverse.

I intended to give some credit to whoever pointed this bit out but I didn't write it down. Oops. I guess I won't be cashing in on the faux-journalism door prize anytime soon. The problem here, above all of the other screamingly obvious problems, is that it equates scarcity of access to information with access being valuable. Make the information worth some trouble to obtain it and maybe (big maybe) people will follow through but when you simply lock the same shit behind some new doors you're inviting disaster.

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