Thinking inside the box

The CBC makes this startling apology over a written tantrum that appeared in its opinion section regarding US Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin. It’s not the apology that I find most interesting, but this statement by the publisher:

But every news organization needs to have an opinion dimension. Access to different viewpoints helps readers, listeners and viewers make reasoned choices, especially during an election campaign.

And therein lies the in-the-box kind of thinking that will doom the legacy media to continue its downward spiral.

Information has potentially great value. Opinion has been commoditized to the point of near worthlessness. In today’s opinion glut the op-eds are have only downsides. The consumers who agree with your positions can get them anywhere for free and have no reason to go to you to get them. The consumers who disagree with your opinions may go elsewhere to get the information that provides the real value.

My advice to the media that want to stay in business: get out of the opinion business and back into the information business. The barrier to entry in the opinion business is far too low, and too many people will give away their opinions for free.

You are reading a free one now.


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