I’m bringing you this from Mark Stenberg in the hope it raises a smile this morning. “The social platforms have finally begun to crack,” he writes. “At Twitter, the lunatics are running the asylum. Facebook, meanwhile, has become a glorified paddock for the elderly and the disabused. And Instagram, once the crown jewel of the Zuckerberg empire, now shuffles through identity crises like a paranoid croupier.”
I’m going to cheat and use this story to highlight two others. Firstly, Axios is reporting that Campbell Brown is to oversee a new media partnerships team at Meta. The team formerly focused on just news partnerships. So there’s a clue about where the platform’s efforts are shifting (not in your direction).
Secondly, BBC News’ Instagram channel has surpassed 20 million followers, thanks to their push into explainers. Take it with a pinch of salt as it’s authored by the BBC’s Instagram Lead herself, but it’s nonetheless a great example of how there’s still good that can come from (tactically) being on platforms.
One from this week’s podcast guest Jack Marshall. He explores the benefits of registration walls for publishers, and what to consider when thinking about implementing one. They aren’t just for publishers with subscription offerings either – registration can be a good way of creating stronger audience connections and, of course, collecting valuable first-party data.
By implementing paywalls, making exclusive content deals and incorporating ad tech, big media companies have reshaped what was once an entirely free and open ecosystem. They will have an even bigger role to play in its future, as John Sullivan explores in this piece from The Conversation. A somewhat depressing outlook for independent podcasts.
Pre-2020, a third of Mark Allen Group’s revenue came from live events. But the business has proved resilient, with pre-tax profit up 20%. “I think one of the reasons why I believe that we’ve been successful is as far as I’m concerned content is absolute king and if you put the emphasis on getting the content right, everything else falls into place,” Mark Allen said.
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