TTT #029: Content does not grow on trees


Former Mayor of the City Council (in 2010)
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The Think Tank #029: Content does not grow on trees
Published by Klatonia, editor-in-chief, The Think Tank Media Group LLC

This past weekend’s post-debate panel with Calvin, Gleg, Kuramia and GraV talked about the EBC and its reliance on polls. Someone scoffed at the argument that preventing the EBC from doing polls would increase its overall productivity.

A scoff well deserved, because if anyone really said that… it is the absolute worst argument I have read this year, about anything. Whoever said that, with all due respect, Sir, Madam or cassowary… that is naiveté at a storkbill level.

I know the storkbill is only cool with humans. The metaphor works in my head, let me have it.

Is the EBC overly reliant on polls right now? Probably, I don't know, I haven't been around long enough.

Would forcing the EBC not to conduct polls make the situation better? Absolutely not.

Do you know why? Because, from an editor-in-chief/Minister perspective, polls are gravy. They run almost without you having to divert any significant resources from the overall workflow. It's a lot of work for the person in charge of the poll, but it's nothing close to a drain on the EBC's resources.

Relying on polls (or any other single content item, for that matter) illustrates only one thing: there’s either no life or no creativity left in the EBC’s pitching arm. Subtracting polls from the workload would only expose this fact even further. If the EBC cannot manage to write with regularity, purpose and creativity, it doesn’t matter what tasks are taken off its plate.

The only way to make the EBC work is the same, only way to make every media work:

Shut the hell up and start writing.

Don’t even start with a publications calendar for your term: that comes only when you have too much content and have to pace its release in order to avoid overlap. Until then, ask people to write. Pester people to write. More importantly, be an example for others and start writing.

You think the EBC’s been soft? Good, open a blank Google Docs page and start writing. Do you wish you didn’t rely on polls so much? Good, open that Docs page and start writing. Are you tired of seeing information summarised in cute flowcharts that sometimes seem to be the whole point of a text? Good, open that Google Docs page and start writing.

Content does not grow on trees. It is the lovechild of work and creativity. Not the next citizen’s: the EBC's and its staff's.

By the way, the technocratic fetish with flowcharts, figures, and everything? Yeah, that’s next.
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