Wednesday, December 16, 2009...4:00 pm
New models for online publishing
Here’s a sign of the times from Jason Preston’s Eat, Sleep, Publish blog.
It’s increasingly difficult, and maybe impossible, to run a profitable content company on the internet if you’re paying for your content to be produced.
Well, we kind of knew that, given how difficult it is to find paying freelance writing gigs right now.
The solution? Put together a site that relies on specialist user-generated content that offers contributers revenue from any advertising their pages attract.
This is a direction that a lot of online content publishers are starting to follow – judged by the proliferation of journalism-job-ads-that-aren’t-exactly-job-ads. But this one at least seems less biased against its contributors.
The site is L33tsauce – which, as you can probably guess given its incomprehensible name, is aimed at computer gamers.
Contributers share their expertise on pages they create using the site’s page building tool. (For some reason, these are called “Dojos” – just calling it a “page” doesn’t seem cool enough.)
Then any advertising revenue generated by the pages is split evenly between the contributor and the site owner.
It’s a neat idea. I have no idea if it’ll work, mind you, but it does sidestep a lot of the problems of traditional media thinking in this area.
- It recognises that the site will only work if gamers want to use it and visit in sufficient numbers to attract advertisers.
- It puts up no money upfront to contributors, thus keeping costs down.
- But it doesn’t stiff its contributors by not paying them. If they are popular, they earn money. If not, they don’t.
For my money, it’s a better deal and an interesting model. But for this to work, it’ll have to ensure that half the proceeds of the advertising revenue doesn’t add up to half of nothing.Tweet