Tag Archives: content

In Brevity: Shitter #RIPTwitter

How Twitter really worksChuckling to myself, I went on Twitter and wrote a tweet. I cleverly included a hashtag and clicked the “Tweet” button. Damn, but I’m funny.

I was now a content producer. Please, no autographs.

Excited, I clicked the hashtag which had magically transformed into a link to bask in the glory of my newfound celebrity status.

My eyes scanned the page. Uh oh, trouble! My tweet was nowhere in sight! “Alas, what’s happened?!” I cried out to the universe.

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Blip Service

How I plan to die.

This is how I plan to die.

This is part 42 in our never-ending coverage of the techpocalypse. Note to self: Kill everyone on staff for overusing the apocalypse thing. -Ed

Once upon I time I said, “Golly gee whiz wilikers, I wish I could see anything I wanted at the time of my choosing. You know, that on demand shit.”

That’s when Lt. Uhura showed up, called me “Captain Adventure,” stunned me with her phaser and uproariously laughed, “Be careful what you wish for.”

One thing they never told you. After one is stunned by a phaser blast one will tend to void their bowels. Finally something worthy of pay-per-view.

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All Your Contents Belong To Us

White represents content on more than one service. Red represents content only available in one place, i.e., the stuff you actually want.

White represents content available on more than one service. Red represents content only available in one place, i.e., the stuff you actually think you want.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news (actually not true) but I think I’ve figured out how it works. (I don’t just bitch, either. I’ll also include solutions. I’m proactive that way.)

  • Netflix is the only source for Netflix Original programming: House of Cards and Orange Is The New Black.
  • Hulu is the only source for Hulu Original programming: None come to mind but I do know they’ll have commercials.
  • Amazon Prime has mostly the same shit.
  • iTunes offers the same content but at premium ala carte prices.
  • HBO is the only source for HBO Original programming: The Newsroom and Game Of Thrones.
  • CBS is a bunch of greedy dillholes: Survivor and Big Bang Theory.
  • MLB is the only source for most MLB Original programming but only if you have enough money. Otherwise they won’t even stream the goddamned World Series. (I was actually surprised by this, but only for a nanosecond.)

I prognosticated to my wife a long time ago that the days of accessing “content” would soon be coming to a close. This week we moved much closer to that reality. You like some shows on Hulu and some on Netflix? You’ll have to buy both even if the remaining majority of their DNA is essentially the same. Exclusivity is the ticket to getting customers to pay more than once. And make no mistake, it is all out global thermonuclear war on your wallet. That is the only thing that matters. They don’t do this for fun.

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You wanted to view our contents?

See the gentle respectful treatment of the content? That should tell you something.

See the gentle and respectful treatment of the content? That should tell you something. Advertisers are subtle.

Every book on building websites and blogs has stressed the following point since ancient humans first described their hunts using stick figures scrabbled onto cave walls:

Content is king.

I guess that’s why the latest It Thing that makes the internet go is building innumerable barriers to content. A new day dawns. Welcome to the Lack of Information Age.

The paradigm shift away from content is now complete. Content is an old and busted philosophy. The new reality is stark and simple. It’s called Money Grub. Low class, I know, but somehow it always comes back to the almighty dollar.

One website I really enjoy recently sent out a bulk email containing the urgent news. Web traffic is surging while revenue (dependent on advertising) is plummeting into the toilet. As you might imagine, that’s not a very effective combination. This immensely successful website is now asking for donations and characterizes the situation as their very survival at stake.

Being one of the biggest and best websites on the web is no longer good enough to guarantee survival.

Meanwhile, the assault on our eyeballs, patience and intelligence is is full swing. How do they ignore the old adage “Content is King?” Let me count the ways.
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The Blog That Wasn’t There Part Two

This is the exciting conclusion to a two-part series entitled The Blog That Wasn’t There. When we left I had just accidentally hit the Publish button and created part one. -Ed

We were led to believe that hyperlinks were good. They could lead to other websites. They were part and parcel of the grand “content” scheme, the belief that sharing would occur across the internet.

For example, bloggers could embed video, music, images and more with just a bit of text. Books on blogging advised us that this was the thing to do.

Even WordPress got in on it. They rolled out something called PicApp. It was a way to legally include a vast library of commercial images in your posts. Like a good little foot soldier I used the feature every chance I could get.

What could possibly go wrong?

Bloggy

Bloggy, bloggy wasn’t there
Bloggy, bloggy didn’t care it wasn’t there
Just like my underwear
Bloggy wasn’t there

If you got a bloggy issue, here’s a bloggy tissue
BL to the O to the G G Y
BL to the O to the G G Y
Say it gots no soul but blog has gots a wide gaping hole

Do bloggers ever go back and re-read their own stuff? I do. Perhaps I’m doing a bit of research on a new post or I want to link something in. When I go through this process I’ll often re-read the entire thing. That’s usually when I discover all sorts of horrible typos that my editor failed to catch. Hint: I don’t have an editor.

And I’m just OCD enough to fix them, years later, once discovered.

But as I went through this exercise I began to notice something else. All my contents were gone.

There, on the blog post, where a content used to be… What’s that?

It’s the wide gaping hole of nothingness.

Every spot where I used PicApp in good faith is now an empty rectangle. All of those YouTube videos? They have been replaced by even funner messages like:

  • The video uploader made the video private
  • The uploader account no longer exists
  • The video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Sony. (You know, the company that wrote fake reviews of its own movies. They are sticklers for the rule of law.)
  • The video is not allowed in your country.
  • The uploader has restricted playback on your platform.
  • YouTube performed an exorcism of the video. (Only applies to¬†Kirk Cameron while trying to promote his latest narcissistic crappy movie.)
  • Video was deemed “hate speech” after whiny protests by the Church Lady and her cohorts. (Only applies to atheists who are amazing.)

In fact, my research indicates all videos will be removed by YouTube except for the following:

  • Funny video of cat

Now I go back and look at old posts and I, the inimitable author of same, don’t even have a clue what was supposed to be there. And all this time you actually thought you were building something. Ha ha ha ha!

The moral of this story: It’s obvious. Never, never, never include embed any content in your blog posts. That’s the worst mistake you can ever make.

So, effective immediately, I’m renaming this place The Library Of Gaping Holes Formerly Known As Contents. The Library of Alexandria had nothing on this vast repository of suppositories.

Just consider it my gift to you. Feel free to come on back any time you want your head filled with nothing.

The Blog That Wasn’t There

copyright-youtubeToday we take a peek behind the blogger’s curtain. If we want to wax poetic, we could call it A Day In The Strife. Either way, this portends dust bunnies and little else of value.

House dust mites are ubiquitous everywhere humans live indoors. Positive tests for dust mite allergies are extremely common among people with asthma. Dust mites are microscopic arachnids whose primary food is dead human skin cells. They do not actually live on people, though. They and their feces and other allergens they produce are major constituents of house dust, but because they are so heavy they are not long suspended in the air.

Source: Wikipedia – Dust

Right out of the gate and a fascinating factoid already got slipped in. See? That’s the power of blogging. Take a deep breath and let’s begin!

An effective blog post requires several key components: A premise, a point of view, words, pictures and other things. That leaves me out. To that end I often find myself researching my own historical archive of posts. Perhaps I want to link a phrase back to something I wrote before. Perhaps I want to revisit a particularly riveting and interesting idea.

Remember, this is all theoretical.

If you’re like me, you got bedazzled and bamboozled by the sheer spectacle of the promised internet. It was going to be this shiny, vast repository of knowledge. It was somehow implied that this would be a Good Thing ™.

A big piece of this bamboozlement was the heralded “hyperlink.” This was going to be a little information workhorse that magically tied it all up, just like the Force binds you, me and the rock together. Unfortunately, it turned out that hyperlink was one of the most gamed inventions in human history and, even worse, had the lifespan of a fruit fly doing the backstroke in a bowl of malathion soup.

We interrupt this blog post to report that the dumb ass author prematurely pounded the Publish key quite by accident. This is another crucial part of blogging. It’s called The Instant Two Part post.

To be continued…

#Awarkward front page caginess at #WSJ

There was something a skosh awkward with the print edition of the Wall Street Journal today (Friday, August 31st). And I’m speaking as a reader of news, not as a forward observer in the partisan wars.

You just know the WSJ wanted to be in on Romney’s big night. It was finally time for the big acceptance speech. No doubt the WSJ wanted it so bad they could taste it.

There was just one wee problem. The event would occur after their print deadline. I’ve seen newspapers in local markets push back deadlines for things like important sporting events in the evening and such. Editorial closes late, which pushed back pre-production, press deadlines and cascades all the way to distribution. The trucks run late. In my experience it takes an edict from the CEO to push back reliability benchmarks on home delivery. It’s a rather big deal.

Apparently the wait time was too long or WSJ doesn’t have such an option. Under the headline “Romney Vows to ‘Restore’ U.S.’ came news “coverage” (air quotes) consisting of several predictions. I guess we could call it a case of “pre-reporting” (air quotes) the news. In that vein the WSJ became the equivalent of a bulletin board system or newsletter.

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