Quite interesting discussion over there at Niggemeier’s place. To give some context: There is a german news magazine (Stern) which has an online portal (stern.de). Stern.de publishes, according to Stefan Niggemeier, articles not only once but every now and then with a new timestamp.
Same for pictures and videos. The naive search engine and the superficial websurfer locates via google that stern.de hasn’t only published something about the topic he is looking for, no, he also observes that it’s quite recent.
Stern.de and other news portals have a problem. They want to cover a wide range of topics in order to reach their customers. This has the problem that in every area they try to cover at least one guy (simply spoken) needs to work on new articles in that area. And this guy isn’t working for free.
Secondly these portals try to cover also a wide variety of different media. While a typical news magazine has nothing in stock but photos and text, a webpage can have videos, podcasts, twitter etc. Go ahead from the typical skills of Stern and other portals I’d rather not think that these nice-and-fancy-addons are their core competence. And producing them, even in bad quality, costs money again.
So content costs money. And news sites usually have a problem earning money with their stuff. They produce in most cases cheap content, which in the end definately leads to the point where the whole idea becomes useless – a portal with poor content, I don’t know many people who would pay for this.
The publishing industry now would say: Well, see, this is why we need more money, because then we can provide you again with quality information. Well – maybe money is a driver here, but certainly those publishers do not make good use of the internet.
The internet and the search engines themselves are portals to news, media and other content. There’s no need for one webpage like Spiegel Online offering all sorts off different topics, while I can read better stuff in the internet somewhere else. Especially if the content the publishers release is that poor in quality, that every other source of information is better.
So – what would be the alternative for a news magazine in the Internet? Maybe they should try with quality. And if the budget doesn’t allow for various low budget articles, maybe they should just try one per day or even less. Because I will definately visit, link and maybe even completely read a high quality article. I won’t even visit stern.de if all what they offer is low quality, superficial news which I could write down in my beginner style as well as they do.
The internet is already variety, it would be an alternative trying to create something unique.