Why So Much Modern Reporting Bothers Us

Scott Rosenberg recently wrote a piece titled:  no more bouncers at the journalism club door.  It’s a good read and Scott makes quite a logical case that anyone can now do journalism.  I agree, it’s no longer a special skill set unique to a select few.  When every company is a media company and anyone can do journalism, the strategies of pure media companies and pure content creators needs to change.

The whole article linked above is worth reading, but one bit from it stood out as worth reiterating, which highlights why much modern reporting tends to bother us:

The phenomenon is this: There’s an inverse relationship between the amount of knowledge you have on a given topic and your level of satisfaction with the media coverage of that topic.

More simply: the better you know a subject the more you think its coverage stinks.

And that’s one of the (many) reasons traditional media outlets have been disrupted.  In essence, those of us with the most passion about a subject can cover it in a way that is more meaningful to industry insiders than any outsider can.

If you’re versed in a subject, immersed in niche digital channels where deep discussions happen surrounding the subject and see mainstream media covering it at the shallow level, it tends to bother you.

Has this happened to you?  Have you read an article on a subject you have knowledge in and thought the reporting was lacking?  If so, why haven’t you decided to do something about this and engage in journalism yourself?

This applies to companies as much as individuals, and this frustration marks an opportunity for the intrepid few willing to go deeper into subjects than most who merely flirt with the surface.

That’s the strategy:  go deeper, cover in more depth and provide sharper analysis than anyone else can.  Sustain this over long periods of time and become the go-to source within the industry.  Both pure media companies and companies with something to sell (whether services or products) can do this.  In time, they’ll even attract other media, looking for glimpses into the inner workings of the industry (they’ll quote you, interview you or link to you – transferring authority to you).

If your media is the variety that scratches an itch no one else can find, you’ll influence a niche more than the shallow reporting that now just tends to bother us.