definition of media

Our First Ever Digital Content and Digital Media News Roundup

digital content newsDigital media, in a lot of ways, is still an emerging industry. There's a lot going on, but still a lot that needs to be figured out. The biggest issue that needs to be figured out: what works and why. Here's some of the latest and greatest in this week's first ever digital content and digital media news roundup: Digital Seen Surpassing TV in Capturing Our Time - NPR - For the first time ever, the time average Americans spend on digital media has outpaced the time spent watching traditional television. Digital media does include watching TV shows on Hulu and Netflix, if you were wondering. This means that there's huge potential in digital media, particularly in tablets and smartphones, which are predicted to have the highest growth in the years to come. But, don't ditch the old tube quite yet. There's still going to be value in watching something live, and many traditional TV networks aren't going to start live streaming things online. If you want to watch the Super Bowl next year, then you will have to be in front of a television.

The Most Valuable Commodity in Online Marketing - Digiday - Email addresses, specifically personal email addresses, are the most valuable commodity online according to this article. They do have a point, as it's something that we'd never get rid of and rarely, if ever, changes. It's not mutable like a screen name or a user name. With cookies under fire for tracking and retargeting, everything will shift to email as a way to figure out who we are and what would be best to advertise to us.

Let's Get Personal: Why We Need to Market to Individuals, Not Audiences - HubSpot - Do you like the idea of a personalized front page for your website? It's a difficult thing to achieve, as individuals are complicated and variegated beings. This article argues the value of creating a personalized experience for your customers/readers, and that the news industry is far behind on this concept. Depending on your website, personalization could be difficult or easy to achieve. Imagine how much more content you'd have to create to meet the personalization standards of everyone in your audience!

Are Brands Confusing Advertising with Marketing - Six Pixels of Separation - In our humble opinion, brands are still struggling with this distinction. We think that many brands still think that advertising is marketing, even though the two are essentially mutually exclusive in online channels. Many brands are still struggling because it's still too much about sales and generating leads, when it's more worthwhile to create something that actually benefits their customers and to help them solve their problems. That's the marketing aspect of it.

Amazon's Jeff Bezos Acquires Washington Post. Co - Media Daily News - We're really curious to see what impact this will have on the news industry, and what Bezos will do with his new properties. We think this won't hurt the news industry by constricting voices or purporting a particular point of view the way a Koch Brothers purchase would have. We also don't really think that Bezos is doing this to jump into the news industry itself. It will be interesting to see what changes take place with the Washington Post, and if the quality of content ever decreases at all.

Tiny Pulitzer-Prize Winning Newsroom May Be the Future of Journalism - eContent - We never heard of InsideClimate News, but we'll be following all that they're doing from here on out. This news site, run by seven people, won a Pulitzer Prize in national reporting for their coverage of the Dilbit oil spill in Michigan. This little news site accomplished something that seemed reserved for only the big guys, showing that these niche news sites might be the future of the news industry. After all, as the established news organizations struggle to cover everything and shutter different news desks, these niche sites doing it right will be the ones picking up the slack.

Related Links:

What a Koch Brothers Newspaper Purchase Would Mean for News

3 Big Principles for Media Creators

How News Websites and Online Publications Can Do SEO

3 Big Principles for Media Creators

media creation Blogs and online publications are now part of the news industry, major media creators with large audiences and even larger influence. Whether you just started your blog yesterday, or you've been operating your online publication for several years, hopefully you operate by a few principles to ensure that you're providing quality news and quality work. If you don't have principles, or haven't taken the time to think about them, then here are three big principles for committed media creators:

1. Do your homework, and then do some more.

This one refers to both doing the necessary research before starting on an article or blog post, as well as fact checking information before putting it onto your site. It's incredibly easy to find what you need online and even to write a blog post based on what you found online, it's still not the same as making phone calls, digging through paper records, and in-person interviews. Do these when you can so as to avoid assuming something is happening or creating unnecessary commotion, as in the case of this blog post, where it would have been very simple to ask a few questions and to talk to the right people.

2. Get it right, every time.

Michael Arrington, founder and former editor of TechCrunch, once said, “Getting it right is expensive, getting it first is cheap.” Sure, getting out first has its benefits: increased clicks, the credibility of breaking a good story first, increased page views. And sure, if you get something wrong, you can amend the article or issue a correction at the bottom where no one might see it. Plus, if you do get it wrong, it's highly likely you won't lose your blog or online publication.

However, you don't want to make getting it first and making mistakes a habit. It's only a matter of time before you get more than a fact, or a name wrong, but an entire news story. A recent example of this is the Google purchase of ICOA, which was picked up by many media outlets before it was found to be a hoax. Let's not forget the ridiculous example of the LAPD purchasing jet packs, which is a perfect example of why principle number one needs to be followed. We can go on and on with fake news stories, but our point has been made here.

3. Practice and demand transparency.

This is one of the newer and more controversial principles for media creators. Before the Internet, transparency was not something that the audience demanded from newspapers and the radio. Transparency isn't necessarily something that's required of every blog and online publication today. However, if your blog or online publication does maintain a specific world view or bias, then that should be clear and revealed to readers. Transparency would also mean admitting to conflicts of interest as well as admitting to mistakes and corrections when they happen.

Do you have any media principles of your own to share? If so, please share them in the comments!

Related Links:

How to Treat Your Blog as a Business

Covering and Publishing a Beat

How to Write a Press Release for Your Blog

What the Crystal L. Cox Case Means for Bloggers

Crystal L. Cox case bloggersThe Crystal L. Cox case shook the blogosphere, ultimately disappointing bloggers and journalists everywhere with the truth regarding her tactics and how she used blogging and search engine optimization. What happened, and what could this case mean to you, especially if you don't consider yourself an "investigative blogger" or even blog as your profession? Here are a couple of takeaways:

Summary of the Crystal L. Cox Case

The original trial took  place in December 2011, when the court ruled that Cox has to pay Obsidian Financial and bankruptcy lawyer Kevin Padrick $2.5 million for defamation. Cox claimed in her numerous blog posts and websites that Padrick and company had engaged in tax fraud, bribery, and money laundering, among other things. The blogging community was originally outraged, as the opinion was interpreted to mean that as a blogger, Cox was not a journalist and therefore wasn't protected by the state's shield law. On the surface, it seemed like a company with more money and power was able to squash the notion that it could be involved in wrong doing.

Reports from April 2012 now reveal that Cox wasn't the victim of an outdated shield law, but was a scammer who utilized blogging and the Internet to ruin people's online reputations, only to offer reputation management services to the very people she defamed. It was found that this was the case with Padrick and Obsidian Financial, as well as the journalists who covered the case in the months after, their family members, government officials in her home town, and other individuals at high-profile companies. Cox has never proven her accusations. Her case went to appeal, which was denied, where the original judge clarified by saying that he did not say all bloggers weren't journalists, just not Cox.

What Bloggers Can Learn From This

The first thing to do, if you're a blogger who wants to be a journalist, is to understand what it means to be a journalist and what behaviors are associated with good journalists. United States District Court Judge Marco A. Hernandez defined media toward the end of his opinion of the original trial, which states:

"Defendant fails to bring forth any evidence suggestive of her status as a journalist. For example, there is no evidence of (1) any education in journalism; (2) any credentials or proof of any affiliation with any recognized news entity; (3) proof of adherence to journalistic standards such as editing, fact-checking, or disclosures of conflicts of interest; (4) keeping notes of conversations and interviews conducted; (5) mutual understanding or agreement of confidentiality between the defendant and his/her sources; (6) creation of an independent product rather than assembling writings and postings of others; or (7) contacting “the other side” to get both sides of a story. Without evidence of this nature, defendant is not “media.”

Follow this definition, and you and your work won't be discredited as sensational or opinionated.

Second Lesson

The second lesson is that bloggers can no longer get away with saying whatever they want, whenever they want online. Prior to this, bloggers have gotten away with writing falsehoods, releasing juicy stories before all the facts are in, or spreading rumor for self gain. If it can count as defamation, then it can be subject to an investigation and a trial similar to Cox's. Even if it's meant to be opinion, it's important to exercise restraint. Take the time to do the legwork, to find evidence that's more than anecdotal or circumstantial.

Third Lesson

Be mindful of your domain name and your blog post titles. Cox has over 500 URLs at her disposal, and some of them include,,, and Domain names like these don't present the best branding opportunities for you as a blogger. First, they show bias, and whether or not you want to be an investigative blogger, you don't want your readers to think that you're writing wanting to create/expose a certain reality, instead of doing what it takes to find the story and to tell it as it is. Second, unless you plan to build your blog into a multitude of sites and eventually to have a multimedia firm, you are building a personal brand. Do you want your personal brand (or even your bigger media brand) to be associated with vitriol, conspiracy theories, and dubious methodology? If not, then you have to think about the rest of your blog, not just individual blog posts.