Paid Content

Rafat Ali is doing a great job with his PaidContent.org blog. It’s really a must read for anyone in the information, media, or Internet business.

But Rafat seems to have an issue with my comment that Reuters did the right thing by putting its headlines on Yahoo! back in the early days of the Internet. He thinks Reuters’ decision to widely syndicate its news on the web was the beginning of Reuters’ well documented probems.

Well Rafat may well be right, but i think if you are in the commodity news business, which is what Reuters is in, then you’ve got to get your headlines out there. And they did. The NY Times did not. The Wall Street Journal did not. The Washington Post did not. And i would bet that Reuters news is way more widely read on the Internet than any of those other news organizations. The problem wasn’t that Reuters widely syndicated its headlines, it was that it let Yahoo! and others run the content directly on their sites. They didn’t drive traffic to their own site, they just took some money and let Yahoo! and others get the traffic.

I made that comment to make a point – which is always dangerous when you are “on the record”. My point was simply that syndicating content is a very powerful way to get your information out there. It’s what i’d like to do with my blog. I’ll run it on any site who I think has the right readership and that will take an RSS feed and post automatically. I think that’s the future of blogging.

I am looking forward to Kinja and any other developments that make it easier for the average person to read blogs and find new ones. And i think Retuers, NY Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, San Jose Mercury, and any other forward thinking news organizations should put their headlines on Kinja and other aggregators to make it easier to have the kind of dialog that blogs promote.

Just like this dialog i am having about Rafat’s issue with my comment at the Always On event last week.