Comments on: Quality vs quantity online http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/ A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: ColemanFoley http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-36101 Fri, 17 Feb 2012 01:36:20 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-36101 Content discovery engines will indeed promote quality content. And don’t worry, there are plenty of content discovery engines to take Summify’s place. Percolate is most similar, in that it only delivers daily summaries, but there are also discovery engines that provide a continuous stream of content. These are best for deeper dives into topics.

Perhaps the best known is Zite, which is available only as an iOS app. It is basically a smarter Flipboard. As you thumb articles up and down, it learns what you like. It works very well. If you need to follow specific topics from a computer, I recommend Trapit, the company I work for.

Trapit (http://trap.it/) is like Zite, only it allows you to follow any topic at all. You tell it which topics you want to follow, then it suggests relevant content. Thumb content up and down, and watch the recommendations improve.

I have compiled an overview of discovery engines here:
http://colemanfoley.com/post/17722454460  /discovery-engine-roundup

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By: GregGolebiewski http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35939 Tue, 14 Feb 2012 14:31:23 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35939 “If you want to get to half a million pageviews, you’re always much more likely to get there with a thousand blog posts than you are with a single swing for the fences.”

But why would you like to get so many pageviews? Only if you depend on ads as your main source of revenue. There are other ways to monetize content, especially high quality. Think out of the box also when it comes to earning money online. Ads is not your only option.

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By: AlexisMadrigal http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35908 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 16:23:39 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35908 Oh, also, an update on my prediction: the story is now in second place in the all-time rankings.

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By: AlexisMadrigal http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35907 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 16:13:09 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35907 @Elijah: As someone who writes for The Atlantic, I have to tell you that this statement is factually incorrect: “It’s worth noting that the Atlantic makes the bulk of its bread and butter — supporting its 150+ year old magazine and pedigree — by churning out exactly the kind of high-volume, frequently low-quality writing that Mr. Salmon talks about through the Atlantic Wire and to a lesser extent the Atlantic.com.”

If by “bread and butter,” you mean traffic or revenue. That is just not true But the metrics are a huge arrow pointing to quality. I don’t know about other brands, but that is the only way that it works at The A. I’ve been saying to a lot of journalism kids who come my way that I don’t think journalists are going to escape being judged partially on the numbers, so you have to find a place where the numbers back up what you want to do. Where the brand apparatus, for whatever reason, provides the right kind of amplification for what you want to write.

Is everything we publish a diamond? No, of course not, though that general problem predates the web. (I’ve done a ton of historical research for various projects and I guarantee you that people misremember the golden days of yore in journalism.)

In the year and a half I’ve been at The A, we’ve moved away from precisely the kind of writing you deride. And that trend will only accelerate based on 2011’s numbers. If you were to see the top stories (ranked by unique visitors) for the last 12 months, you’d see a few of things. First, the top is dominated by longer, reported pieces. Second, even stories that look low brow tend to be faux low brow, i.e. a big/funny/webby headline backed up by serious thinking, writing, and/or reporting.

In 2011, we published less per person but higher quality. And we’ve doubled unique users y/y. Our people are taking the right message from these numbers: High volume, churnalism BS gets us nowhere. Quality wins for us.

Last, re: The Wire. That site is a fundamentally a different thing with a different editorial structure geared for speed and breaking news. I like The Wire a lot, but we’re talking about a very different beast that doesn’t purport to not be about speed and breaking news. (It’s called The Wire!)

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By: elijahslate http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35906 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 15:24:22 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35906 Mr. Salmon is right — and the success of the Atlantic’s assiduously researched cat piece is by no means an indication of any hidden truths about the web, where quantity and SEO rule.

It’s worth noting that the Atlantic makes the bulk of its bread and butter — supporting its 150+ year old magazine and pedigree — by churning out exactly the kind of high-volume, frequently low-quality writing that Mr. Salmon talks about through the Atlantic Wire and to a lesser extent the Atlantic.com. And that the story of parasites and Toxoplasmosis, as vileville pointed out, has been published already at the Economist, and on Radiolab.

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By: Danny_Black http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35899 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 11:06:09 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35899 jayrosen, you could pretty much say that about anything in the NYT apart from maybe the Dealbreaker site. Would actually say that the NYT tends to lower the average amount of knowledge in the world.

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By: Fuddleducker http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35898 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 06:33:30 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35898 Didn’t we just read a version of this article a few days ago with regard to art? The Picassos are valued more highly because they simply had higher output and wider distribution?

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By: jayrosen http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35895 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 02:14:01 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35895 A case of expensive, low quality content. Lots of reporting, lots of editing. Says nothing, has no point of view, and adds nothing to what we already know.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/12/busine ss/media/the-washington-post-recast-for- a-digital-future.html

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By: Danny_Black http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35888 Sun, 12 Feb 2012 15:59:36 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35888 Curmudgeon, when i look at what I consider to be the more thoughtful news articles I have read, virtually none of them come from newspapers. As far as I can tell there is a general race to the bottom when it comes to accurate, factually correct reporting with “bad journalism driving out good”. Also when talking about “Great Masters”, Dickens was a serialised novel writer.

TFF, the other great thing this site has – although less than before – is links to original docs.

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By: TFF http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/12/quality-vs-quantity-online/comment-page-1/#comment-35887 Sun, 12 Feb 2012 14:39:51 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12173#comment-35887 There is an additional dynamic which doesn’t get much play…

I suspect that many people read for the comments as much as they do for the articles. Often the people commenting have unique insight. At the very least, they offer a diversity of opinion that no author could hope to encompass.

The Atlantic has a pretty good commenting community (if not as rich as yours, Felix). That, more than the name-value of the publication, draws page views.

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