return Home

The circle of life

Is my six-year-old nephew smarter than the media industry? It’s a ridiculous and somewhat surprising question to be asking myself after a weekend playing in Battersea Park and watching the Lion King with my little nephews. The question you are probably asking yourself is am I the modern-day version of Simba’s uncle, Scar – by inflicting such an emotional rollercoaster of a film on such young children?

Lion king ()

Walt Disney's The Lion King

 

Some of you may even be wondering why I am talking about the Lion King at all! Well to recap – beyond the love story, some excellent tunes, and a slightly biblical fight between good and evil – there is an underlying plot of nature’s ecosystem, and how food chains work in balance. Reflected with the spotted hyenas, who make the lands barren from overindulging somewhat!

 

scar ()

Scar and Simba from Disney’s The Lion King

 

And it was at this point my oldest nephew chirped up, saying he had learnt about food chains at school. He continued, “you need animals to eat the ‘plant eating’ animals, otherwise there would be no plants left”. He then proceeded to show me a YouTube video explaining how food chains work. Not bad for a six year old I thought.

All of which leads to my original question, is my nephew smarter than the media industry? Let’s consider the media landscape as our ecosystem. Publisher’s content are the plants, consumers the herbivores and brands the carnivores.

Through the ever-growing list of paywalls being erected, consumers are becoming harder and harder to come by, making life for carnivores more difficult. The opportunity for carnivorous brands to find their target audiences is getting harder, as the land is becoming more barren.

 

paywalls ()

Rezonence research, as of May 2018

 

So whilst a media owner being able to put up a paywall should be celebrated – as their content is unique enough to justify consumers paying for it – we should remain cautious.

If we starve the ecosystem of information completely, we risk permanently damaging it – something my six year old nephew has fully grasped! Leaving a barren land where the little information left is no longer funded by advertisers, but something or someone far more sinister.

More like this

The warning signs are there, but are we looking?

Media buyers should be more like pension managers

The founders of the Internet have grown up. Isn't it time the Internet did the same?

Innovations in AI will help publishers increase dwell time and engagement

  • Behind The Economist's first graphic novel on Instagram

    A couple of weeks ago, The Economist published a graphic novel on Instagram, called "Data Detectives". The production of the piece was a group effort involving Oliver Morton, senior editor and briefings editor; Jon Fasman, Washington DC correspondent; Rob Gifford, Britain correspondent, Stephen Petch, art director, Ria Jones, digital and social media picture editor, Ben Shmulevitch, editorial designer; Matt Withers, graphic designer and Simon Myers, freelance graphic designer and illustrator. 

    9th Jul 2018 Features
  • Can slow journalism march on… slowly?

    As news cycles speed up, 'slow' journalism seems to be slowing down. These days, to don the robe of a slow journalist, deadlines - and even scoops - are negated in seeking out accuracy, proportionality, fairness and, it seems Pulitzer prizes. An employer that can afford to pay a journalist an annual salary to tell one in-depth story  a year may come in handy too.

    9th Jul 2018 Features
  • Hearst UK launches new digital metric to demonstrate content engagement quality for commercial partners

    Hearst UK has launched a new metric to demonstrate the engagement quality of digital branded content for its commercial partners.

    9th Jul 2018 Insight News
  • Gruner + Jahr launches Gala in Greece

    Gala is now available, through a license agreement, as a weekly supplement to the Sunday edition of Greek newspaper Proto Thema. The editor-in-chief is Jenny Agiandriti, who previously served as editor-in-chief of the Greek editions of Thema People and Grazia. 

    9th Jul 2018 Launches
  • Take part in the Distripress Circulation Monitor 2018 survey

    The Distripress Circulation Monitor (DCM) is in its fifth year. The report is commissioned by Distripress, the international press distribution organisation, to provide companies involved in the cross-border sales of newspapers and magazines, with quality insight in to the performance of the global market for press distribution and the factors affecting trading. 

    9th Jul 2018 Insight News
Go to Full Site