By: | Thursday, May 31, 2012 //

Independent Trucks put out a gnarly welcome video for Carlos Ribeiro. Seems like the guy can skate anyway he wants. Must be nice!

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  • MiCaa

    I’m an oldish guy, who was invlevod with, and wrote a fair amount for, Wired in the early days. I haven’t written a lot for the web. So maybe I just don’t get it. But I’ve got to say that it seems to me that much of this debate like the NYT article that spawned it is based on a false premise.I don’t see how falling advertising rates at Wired are Chris Anderson’s problem. Readership is, but that’s going up and for my two cents Chris has done a fantastic job of reinventing the magazine for a post-Web-n.0 existence. Advertising sales are an issue for the publisher and ad sales director. Chris has delivered a bunch of eyeballs. It’s up to them to package them into an attractive deal for advertisers. That won’t be an easy problem to solve. Wired invented a demographic that every publisher in existence in the early 1990s told Louis didn’t exist. So reinventing it may also require creating another new demographic. But that is still doable; and it’s theirs to do. The magazine though not necessarily the web brands will succeed or fail on their solution. But jumping on Chris, however much fun it may be, is irrelevant and possibly counter-productive. As to the more interesting issue of how best to leverage print and online, there are certainly Bengali-typhoon-sized opportunities. But the fundamental problem, I reckon, is that they remain different worlds, and individual journalists can’t really bridge them in a way that coheres to individual articles or threads of discussion of the sort that advertisers can sell (though, yes, people can and do write successfully for both, and hats off to Felix Salmon among others for doing so). It’s tempting, but they require different sorts of storytelling, and imply different concerns and conversations.When I was with The Economist in the mid 1980s, I interviewed a wonderful man at the Wall Street Journal called Bill Dunn. He had a vision. Dow Jones published for a variety of markets, from high-priced newsletters for commodities markets to the journal itself. One of the wonders of information, Dunn reckoned, was that less and narrower (eg, today in oil futures) sold for more than more and broader (eg, the Journal). So his idea was to create economies of scale in information production, and then maximize revenue from it by slicing and dicing to hit every possible single point under the demand curve. It didn’t work, because the sort of people and articles that can fascinate oil traders are not the same as those who can compel readers of the Journal. In Wired terms, their contexts are different.Many of the same issues apply to writing for print and the web, although differently. So the key trick seems to me to be to get get different sets of editorial people, with different agendas, goals and concerns, to work in harmony to a common goal. Parts of this thread show how many ways this is like getting cats in a sack to sing in harmony. Other parts show how many really cool possibilities there are. But the basic point remains. Most of this discussion is just talking about how to get more *readers*. Chris has done that. Possibly could do better, but nonetheless the real issue for the magazine is how to get more *advertisers*.