filizefe's blog

Quality vs. Quantity: Which one to pay for?

Posted in Uncategorized by filizefe on August 6, 2009

Bill Wasik in his talk at BigThink claims that shorter written content (newspapers) is inherently going to be free in part because there’s so many people making it. In contrast, there is demand in the market to longer content (e-books) even though people need to pay for it. He determines that modern media made it available for everybody to create content and find a large audience to stage so there is an amateur explosion creating short content. Also people have no patience to pay for short content online. However, what is the role of quality? Is it the effectiveness or length of the content make us pay for it.

I agree, the modern media made it incredibly easy to produce content and share with large or selected audiences. Hanson Hosein, Director of the Master of Communication in Digital Media Program at the University of Washington, commented about the modern media by also naming as pocketmedia: “everyone is a communicator, a filmmaker, a journalist, a content creator, a community  organizer, a rabble rouser, a message disrupter, a salesperson, a marketer, a broadcaster, a narrowcaster.” This media environment turns everybody a potential producer. However, the ratio of effective content when compared with the informational pollution is not too high. People are improving their skills to find quality content or willing to pay a fee to be a member of a platform where they can be served with selected quality content.

Quantity on the other hand is losing its importance. Nobody has time to spend with useless information. As a reader, if one day I believe that I can’t reach accurate news through my own Internet search, I’d open up my wallet to pay a fee for online news service. In other words I’d trade my time with money. This is more about getting a service not the length of the content itself. But also there are some good examples of short quality content which can compete with 1000 pages: Hemingway once wrote a story in just six words.

“For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”

…and is said to have called it his best work.