[Contributor] New Content: The Future of the Internet


Contributor – Alexander Plate
Follow Alex on Twitter @AlexanderBGault

It’s no surprise that the internet has drastically increased the amount of content, of any kind, that people with access to it consume.

In the past 2 years, 90% of the worlds’ content has been created and shared via Internet based platforms. That means that every book, movie, and television show from the nascence of humanity to 2013 accounts for only 10% of the worlds’ content today.

Who is taking in all of this content?

Where is all of this going?

There are many platforms, and nobody can really know what they all are. New platforms are created and revised almost daily, and so many come and go without a real following that they’re only a memory in someone’s server banks by the end of their first month.

Here, we will talk about 3 main platforms: YouTube, Twitter, and Tumblr.

Youtube is a Google-owned video sharing website, where people upload self-made videos to their “channel”, or profile, and gain “subscribers”, or people who will get updated on the videos posted. YouTube has proven to be one of the most important platform for internet content ever created, and this is shown by how much content is uploaded to it.

There are 300 hours of video content posted to YouTube, on average, per minute. That content comes in the form of vlogs (video blogs), original music, short films, and personality-driven videos and channels. YouTube has become, to the new generation, what television was to the older generations.

Now, instead of sitting down to one 45-minute show with four commercial breaks, people sit down to multiple 6-8 minute videos with only one ad per video. This actually has increased the visibility of advertisements to these watchers, as now, instead of only four or five commercial breaks where people lose their focus after the second ad, if that, now people are seeing a shorter, more interesting, advertisement, and there is only one per video, two or three for the longer 40-50 minute videos that sometimes appear.

YouTube’s gives viewers a sense of connection with the content creators, because in most circumstances, the video was written, filmed, edited, and advertised by the person performing in it. There are very few channels with multiple people, and those that do have multiple people generally have all of them in front of the camera lens as well, giving a sense of familiarity between the viewers and the creators.

The next big platform we’ll talk about is Twitter. Twitter is referred to as a micro-blogging platform, in which people create text or image based content and share it to an ecosystem of other people doing the same exact thing. Twitter has power by virtue of its simplicity. You don’t have to create and design a personalized homepage, there is only one design that everyone, from the most followed person on the platform to the newest person to make an account.

Twitter allows posts of at most 140 characters, including spaces and punctuation, so most posts, or “tweets” are somewhere between one and two short sentences. The image side is relatively similar, and the max amount of photos you can post is four. The platform has power as a connection agent between a creator and their audience, and is used by every popular YouTube creator with an active account. Presidential candidates have been using it since, in the US, the 2012 election, and individuals use it to connect with their friends, but strangers as well.

While the older generation likes Facebook for its long form capabilities, and its basis on connecting people to their already-existing circle of friends and family, the younger generations enjoy Twitters openness, as anyone can see an account and its tweets, unless that account owner has set their account settings to private, and its short-form simplicity.

Finally, there is Tumblr, known as a social blogging site. Tumblr functions similarly to both Twitter in that it is a blog platform where those that follow you are not necessarily people who know you. Twitter rounds out the group of content types we have listed here. YouTube functions for video, Twitter for short text, and Tumblr works very well for images and longer text. Through a system of tagging posts, where you give a searchable subject to a post that anyone can find, and reblogging, where one blog decides to post your content (appropriately sourced) on their own with the click of a button.

Tumblr is not as popular as Twitter or YouTube, however, and in some ways is exclusionary. Many blogs on the platform are very progressive-thinking, and more traditional individuals occasionally find themselves as the target of abuse on the platform for fitting into the “patriarchy” or being “cis-normative”, or unaccepting of those individuals that to not identify as either male of female only. Despite the faults of a relatively small, but very vocal part of its user group, (which exists on both YouTube and Twitter, but with far less success), Tumblr is a powerful way to connect to your niche groups, and appropriately tagged posts on the platform can reach millions of eyes.

The internet of today offers more ways that one can count to give and receive content. Individuals can use it to boost their own careers and build a brand, and companies can use it to revolutionize their methods of advertising and reach a whole new audience. But to effectively use these tools, you must recognize the strengths and weaknesses of each platform, and optimize accordingly.

Alexander Gault-Plate is an aspiring journalist and writer, currently in the 12th grade. He has worked with his schools newspapers and maintained a blog for his previous school. In the future, he hopes to write for a new-media news company.

You can follow Alexander on Twitter here https://twitter.com/AlexanderBGault.


[Strategy] Top 5 Strategies for Forgiveness

The first thing that we have to understand and accept is that forgiveness is an active act, not a passive one.

The common misconception is that if we do nothing, or if we avoid, or if we just give in “a little bit this one time” or we don’t stand up for ourselves, that somehow, conflict situations will just magically resolve themselves.

But, much like being an entrepreneur of any stripe, if you are in conflict and you don’t act to get forgiveness (or to be forgiving), nothing will happen. Conflict events will just unspool towards outcomes and consequences that may not work for you, but may work out quite nicely for the other party.

Because resolution, forgiveness and even mindfulness is so wrapped up with philosophy, theology and spirituality in the West, we often forget that there must be action taken on our part in the physical, material realm to get anything started in the first place.

We have to decide—the first strategy is that we have to make a conscious decision to longer mentally, spiritually, and emotionally carry the baggage of another’s perceptions of us. What happened in the past cannot be undone, and revisiting old conflicts repeatedly in language, stories, narratives and other ways, only serves to allow each conflict participant to hold on.

We have to act –the strategy of action cannot happen before decision, though many people try. The strategy of action is what we teach our children (“Go and say you’re ‘sorry’ to your sister”) when they have wronged each other. Rarely do we tell them that this is the second step. Without deciding to act, the action of seeking resolution, forgiveness, and restoration become hollow exercises that retain as little meaning to the other party as they do for you.

We have to face forward – the strategy of facing forward goes past a lack of empathy (which is focused on others) and goes directly to confronting and giving language to unarticulated fears. This is the hardest thing to do, because human beings are encultured to avoid even talking about their fears aloud in casual conversation. Our modern tendency (in the West) to confuse transparency (“I posted a rant on Facebook and people responded”) with authenticity (“This rant on Facebook reveals what I REALLY think about ‘X’ issue”) is another way for us to hide from what scares us. Before we can seek forgiveness, or pursue it from others, we have to confront what we’re afraid of and articulate our fears.

We have to be empathetic –the strategy of being empathetic is one that also can be perceived as being disingenuous when it’s not performed in concert with these other strategies, which is why many trainers leapfrog over it. Or, we give a head tilt in it’s general direction, and then move on to addressing what we feel are more concrete areas of impact. But empathy is other focused and requires us to put down our selfishness (based in our fear of lack) and really see the other party for who they are. We have to care. And the things is, many of us don’t.

We have to want the forgiveness as badly as we want to attack, avoid, or accommodate the other party in conflict—the strategy of wanting forgiveness and restoration to a new relationship is personal. So personal, in fact, that we almost never say it to the other party. Instead, we many times opt to hoping that the other party will just “get it” from our nonverbal communication and then become frustrated when it doesn’t happen. Or, we don’t want to admit that we want the conflict scenario to continue because of the feelings of power and control that it gives us in the relationship.

All of these strategies are hard, time consuming and might not work. They also have to be employed when you might not feel like employing them, instead desiring to “just do what I’ve always done.” But getting forgiveness (and giving forgiveness) are not actions based in hope.

Click on the link here and download the FREE HSCT White Paper on FORGIVENESS AND RECONCILIATION TODAY!

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principle Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

HIT Piece 09.29.2015

Referrals used to be the ‘redheaded stepchild’ of the sales process.

Back in the day (and even with some organizations selling products and services even now) referrals were philosophically relegated to the back bin of the sales pitch. They were (and still are) seen as the fallback position of a sales person who “can’t close” with a prospective customer.

But, now that technology has stolen the one thing that separated a sales representative from the rest of us—information about a product or service—referrals are increasingly seen as the only way forward to even talking to a prospect in the first place.

When I attend meetings and when I network, I talk about what I do very briefly and wait for two things to happen:

  • The story of what I do to catch up to the other person’s story of what I do


  • The other person to decide that what I do is “too hard for them to explain to someone else.”

At that point, where both of those stories intersect, that is where the referral light begins to shine in their eyes.

Some products and services work better with interruptive marketing, poor customer service and pushy, insistent selling. In many sectors, the number of those products and services are decreasing by the day. There are other products and services that work better based on relationship, stories, referrals and networked connections. The number of those are increasing by the day.

For some of us, this is a scary prospect and there are multiple ways to address those fears. For those of us not bound to dogma and ready to take a chance to do some things that might not scale (i.e. might not “sell”) this is an exhilarating prospect.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Advice] Reasons to Forgive

How many times do you have to forgive the other party in a conflict?

Well, if certain books are to be believed, quite a lot.

In a world of instant messaging, instant gratification and instant stimulation with instant reactions, the long, slow, deliberative act of forgiving someone else for something that they’ve done to you can be emotionally exhausting for many people.

There are a few things to consider before getting on the forgiveness train:

Who does it impact? – Finding the motive to forgive, just like finding the motive to engage in a conflict, comes down to understanding who benefits from forgiveness. Do you benefit more than the other person, or does the other person benefit more than you? Many people will respond from zero-sum thinking (“If I forgive the other party, then I lose something, i.e. my position, my ability to be ‘right’, etc.”) but sometimes the gains are deeper than the losses.

What can really change, and what can’t? – Do people change? Well, we don’t know the answer to that question, but we can say that people deserve the chance to change. And sometimes people deserve to be punished. But without knowing everything about a situational conflict (and people inside of situational conflicts rarely know everything about themselves or the other party) makes that decision harder, not easier. In popular culture, dealing out death in judgment, is seen as retributive and righting all wrongs. But asking the question about what can change in a situation to make it better for both you and the other party is key to getting on the path to forgiveness.

How do you go about doing it? – Advice, tips, tactics and even strategies fail here, as the “how” is invariably entangled in the gossamer of the conflict itself. But one thing to consider is how to heal oneself first, before attempting to “fix” the other party. Forgiveness is a personal act that starts from within and moves outward in ever expanding concentric circles.

Where does forgiving somebody begin and where does it end? – Restorative justice practices unite perpetrators and victims of crimes. Depending upon the cultural background of the victim and the perpetrator, these efforts may work, or may backfire. However, when there is a conflict in the midst of a shared culture (a work culture, a school culture or a family culture) forgiving begins in the minds—and hearts—of the participants in the conflict. As far as where forgiveness ends, well, that’s subjective as well.

When can you forgive? –Whenever you like. Or not at all.

In the West, forgiveness is wrapped up with religious proscriptions, but in reality, forgiveness is deeply psychological and a process based in science. The results of forgiveness—lowered blood pressure, less stress, reduced stroke risk—should be tied more to the actual process of getting on board with someone who has wronged you.

But the act of forgiveness is personal, difficult and time consuming, But in a world of emotional labor, it might be the most important journey we ever embark on.

Click on the link here and download the FREE HSCT White Paper on FORGIVENESS AND RECONCILIATION TODAY!

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Advice] The 10 Year Overnight Success IV

We laid out for them, at one point in the meeting (a meeting that we had scheduled for, pushed for and planned for, by the way) all of the projects in which Human Services Consulting and Training is currently involved.


When we were done talking, we admitted to feeling—and thinking—that we have been in a bit of a long-term dip, since last October.

They (the other party on the other side of the table) laughed and told us that we had been “very busy” for being in a dip.

In another interaction we had, we were talking with another up and coming podcaster. We were talking about how long it takes to create a blog following versus creating a podcast following, versus creating a video based following.

We talked about how you need at minimum, 1000 raving, dedicated fans, gathered from the long tail, to make this work in the long-term.

Our fellow podcaster raised his eyebrows and said something to the effect of “It takes ten years to become an overnight success.”

Someone else, about a year and a half ago, said the same thing.

Stories of success (and the pornography of failure stories) litter the Internet, entrepreneurship, small business literature and, the truly American section of the local bookstore, the self-help section. But what is never pointed out in those stories, is that for at least a decade before you read the story on the Internet, became a fan online, watched a TV show with a “shark” in it, or even picked up that self-help book, the people that made that were toiling away in anonymity, just like you.

The path to both success and failure takes a decade of commitment and consistency, trial and error, tears and joy. Dizzying heights and terrible dips.

And whether you’re building a product, a service or some weird, wonderful hybrid, you better be willing to commit to a ten year long journey of ideas that might not work, people that might not like you all the time and projects that might fly, or crash and burn.

What separates the employees, from the risk takers, and the owners from the entrepreneurs is the willingness to go on a ten-year long walk.

Just keep walking…

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Advice] Content Commitment

The thing that destroys most content creation efforts is not lack of talent, ability, or innate skill.

3 Easy Pieces

The thing that destroys most content creation efforts is not lack of resources, lack of time or lack of money.

The thing that destroys most content creation efforts (from live streaming via Periscope and Meerkat all the way to writing a blog on a daily basis) is the lack of a will to consistently commit to a course of action.

Whether it works, or not.

Whether it attracts attention, or not.

Whether it scales, or not.

The lack of a will to commit to the process, regardless of outcome, seems foolish and pointless when stacked against economic metrics that have dominated content production for the last 100 years.

We still run into professionals who either own businesses, who have built projects, and who are accomplished at wringing a profit margin out of the world, who are shocked that we blog every day, or that we have a podcast with only one advertiser–at this point in its development.

Then they are even more shocked that we plan to do more things that do not produce revenue right away.

By doing things that do not produce revenue now, enable us to do all kinds of things that will produce revenues later on.

If more thinkers, builders and doers would adopt this mindset (by the way, it is the only mindset that works in the world of the digital, the automated and the algorithmic) the long tail would become fat, the economic value of consistency and commitment would experience exponential growth, and the level of the quality of content being created would increase.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Strategy] Access to the Means of Production

There is a growing chorus from the progressive parts of the US economy, concerned that many historically marginalized race and class groups may not be benefiting from the fullness of the revolutions occurring in high technology, economics, and communications.

This chorus centers in the world of high technology startups of Silicon Valley and their media/opinion outlets. Ironically, this call is coming from a world that has historically been dominated by the mostly male, mostly white (or Asian) and the mostly highly educated.

The gender/sexual discrimination case of Ellen Pao and her plight as CEO of Reddit, has brought the issue of “women in technology” to the forefront of tech Twitter. Missing in this discussion (or maybe floating around the edges of it) is the fact that discussions around the core issues of class and racial advancement and economic development continue to employ the language of the past to define problems of the present; and, to frame discussions of the future. This framing (or storytelling, if you will) has to shift in three areas for there to be more participation from those currently existing exclusively in the space of the historically discriminated against:

Access to technology, content creation mechanisms, and the knowledge of how those systems work (and why) needs to be framed as a social justice issue, rather than as a technology/economic issue.

The challenging and uncomfortable question that no one asked (not the NYPD, not the Mayor of New York’s office, not the multiple variations of protestors, not the progressive pundits) about the entire Eric Garner incident is: “Why was Eric Garner on the sidewalk, selling “loosie” cigarettes, and having continuous issues, run-ins and arrests with the NYPD in the first place?”

Think about that question for a moment and then think about this, equally challenging question: “If Eric Garner had sufficient access to technology, content creation mechanisms, and the knowledge of how those systems work, would he have had to be on a sidewalk at all, or could he have fed his family, from his home, by using those mechanisms?”

These are two questions that need answers, advocacy and more noise behind them, because access to the means of production is the social justice issue of the 21st century—regardless of race, culture, class or creed. And let’s not even get into dissecting the background of other lives and how they could have been positively impacted by a greater knowledge and access to technology that could bring them—at minimum—the beginnings of an income and a better life.

Creating (and co-creating) rather than constantly consuming as a means of understanding how new technological and economic systems will work in the future.

Even with 1.5 million pieces of blog content being created every day and 175 million blogs being out there (along with all the videos on Youtube, live streaming, podcasts and other image based content) there is still a dearth of quality, meaningful content. Particularly, content that reflects the lives that are lived by people other than a thin stratum of wealthy, North American and European peoples.

As the Internet expands globally, many young, African Americans run the risk of being left behind on a global web, full of aggressive, young focused content creators. Understanding the how and why of content production allows people to co-create their lives with others. This is an idea that’s an easy sell when a culture leapfrogs the desktop computer; less so when a subculture is historically marginalized and suffers from the results of educational disparities for a wide variety of reasons.

Changing mindsets around the possibility of owning and building something requires telling a different story about what risks matter—and which risks don’t matter.

As the risks that used to matter begin to matter less and less, appropriate preparation through role modeling and education is important for everybody in the US culture. However, for those people who will be left behind as the perceived security of employment becomes more and more a thing of the past (“In my experience as a black entrepreneur, I saw the majority of my family take the government job route, while I always had the itch to pursue a self-made career.”) there will be no gentle landings as circumstances change. Just sudden, violent bumps.

As the Singularity eventually arrives, the solution is not to ameliorate the impact of these bumps through the creation of Universal Basic Income systems, or micropayments and micro-lending schemes. These are band-aid solutions at worst, and recipes for negative social disruption at scale at best. Instead, the long-term solution is to begin to teach future generations what the real risks are. The mindset and attitude that causes success to have many fathers and failure to be but an orphan, still reigns in many sectors of this economy, but that shouldn’t prevent our society from investing in education about the risks that matter: emotional labor, collaboration, and building credibility and trust through the long tail, rather than relying on the short mass.

In the end, there are disruptions that have to happen in education, economics, finance, real estate, and other areas, not to level the playing field—this is an impossibility—but to create new fields, with new rules for new participants that may have been historically disenfranchised by the past.

Give a man a fish, he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, he’ll eat for a lifetime. But teach a man to build and sail a boat, and he’ll go to the furthest horizon and teach someone else. Isn’t it time for us to advance the access, technology and discrimination battles past the language of 20th century battles, and frame them instead in the language of the 21st century, that we’re already 15 years into?

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Podcast] Earbud_U, Season Two, Episode #4a (Special Edition) – Dianne Crampton

Earbud_U, Season Two, Episode #4 (a) (Special Edition) – Dianne Crampton, Consultant, Organizational Development Entrepreneur, TIGER for Success in Organizations

Earbud_U Season Two, Episode #4 (a) Special Edition - Dianne Crampton

Consulting and training is hard, but not for the reasons that you would think.

I have sat in a lot of situations with people in organizations who have power in those organizations, and when viewed from the outside, those situations look like interviews.

I’ve actually had my wife correct me on this distinction with a difference before she got distracted by my quote-unquote cute butt.

The hard part of consulting and training is determining what the client needs, even though what they say they want is not always what they need. The other hard part is a corollary to that: developing a product for other people who are part of your business network who may not be able to afford your services.

Our special guest for our show today, Dianne Crampton, has discovered the solution to this.

Dianne lives and works in Oregon, so maybe it’s something in the start-up air that’s wafting up from San Francisco and other points south, but she’s managed to do some hard work and gotten some attention for her work.

The other part of developing a consulting product is funding the development of that product, and that’s where the Indiegogo part of this all starts.

Dianne will talk about all of this in our podcast today.

So, support the show, go to Dianne’s Indiegogo page (link here–> https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/improved-360-team-behavior-work-culture-survey/x/8706859#/) and donate a few bucks to help a consultant productize a service that matters. There is a $5 reward for each funding lead, so go check out all the details!

Trust us, leadership is as important to resolving conflict as practical skills are.

Connect with Dianne in all the ways you can, below:

Dianne Crampton on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/diannecrampton

The TIGERS Success Website: http://corevalues.com/

The TIGERS Success Blog: http://corevalues.com/blog/

The TIGERS Among US Website: http://www.tigersamongus.com/

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/TeamBuildingSuccess/timeline/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Diannecrampton

HIT Piece 09.22.2015

  • You probably don’t have “what it takes” to found a start-up.
  • You probably don’t have “what it takes” to learn how to play an instrument.
  • You probably don’t have “what it takes” to build a business.
  • You probably don’t have “what it takes” to write a book.
  • You probably don’t have “what it takes” to paint a picture.
  • You probably don have “what it takes” to do any of these scary things.

So, you’ll probably vacillate, hem and haw, and eventually go work at a 9-to-5 job, consume content other people create through your mobile phone, watch some television and go to bed.

Don’t feel bad.

I didn’t “have what it takes” to do any of the things I mentioned above.

And, in many ways, I still don’t.

So, I just went out and did those hard things anyway.

The people who write, and opine, about how hard it is to do what they do (or how easy it is, let’s be honest) aren’t doing you (or me) any favors. Zig Ziglar said repeatedly over his 50 years long career (which he didn’t think he could do either, and which he started in his mid-40’s) that “There’s always room at the top. It’s getting out of the bottom that’s hard.”

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Opinion] Ok…So Ad Blocking is Here…

Ok…so ad blocking is here….

From browsers to mobile hardware, the drive is on (whether from the creators of ad blocking software or just from us all talking about it now) to empower consumers of content to block advertising they don’t want to see via software based means. This advertising, small and large web publishers argue, is part of a fundamental principle of mass media, going back at least a century. The principle comes down to a deal, which—like many deals—can be renegotiated and changed to reflect shifting values and principles:

We (web publishers) create content without charging you for the creation of that content, and in exchange you (the content consumer) give us attention and we charge a third party, the advertiser, to put ads in front of, and around, our content.

This same deal drove the development and growth of platforms, such as television, radio and newspapers, and the development and growth of content on those platforms, for the last 100 years.

But, the Internet was supposed to be a different content delivery platform.


Apparently not.

Now, consumers—instead of just choosing to ignore interruptive ads like they always have (and because measuring audience engagement is difficult (but not impossible) there are more intrusive, interruptive ads, not less)—content consumers are choosing to block everything.

Seth Godin wrote with hope fifteen years ago about permission marketing. Cory Doctorow writes with abandon about the anarchy of the web. But both of those writers and thinkers assume a fundamental point about most content, whether it’s on the internet, on the radio, on television, or in a magazine or newspaper, that must be written down and repeated out loud:

Most content on any platform isn’t good enough, interesting enough, relevant enough or entertaining enough, to act as the glue binding the audience of content consumers to the content creators in a “revenue for value” exchange based relationship.

This is why there are millions and millions of cat and baby videos on Youtube, but only a few breakout “stars.” This is why Vogue magazine (or Burberry on Instagram) will be fine with ¾ of their magazine content (or their social distribution feed) being ad space, but Mother Jones or The National Review might just wither and die with ad blockers. This is the reason there are 152 million blogs on the Internet, publishing 1.3 million pieces of content a day, but no blogger has risen to dominance on the web in 15 years.

Thus advertising.

There are a few ways out of this bind, but before we get to that, the question of “What kind of internet do we want to have?” must be answered. We (and we are including ourselves in this group as a content consumers) have not answered this question in any kind of meaningful way. Content consumers have to be a part of the conversation before the endpoint of plopping and advertisement in front of our eyes is reached. Content consumers (to build trust and get their permission) have to be engaged in the building, creating and disseminating of a product from start to finish—or not at all.

The first way out of this bind is by crowdsourcing content development. There are some sites on the web that do this well; there are many more that do it badly, or not at all. Crowdsourcing journalism, entertainment, and other forms of content may lead to less ad blocking—and higher revenue—rather than more by content consumers who feel emotionally invested in the product.

The second way out of this of this bind is by creating more subscription-based platforms. For subscriptions to work, there must be a consideration (and a careful one at that) by the web publisher about what kind of content is being created. Long tail philosophy should be ruling with brand-based content, but many are still stuck in the 1950’s. By the way, this is the only way that data gathering, analytics and implementation based on the data is useful as a tool for content creators and publishers, as well as the incorporation of micropayments via cryptocurrencies. Don’t believe me? Ok. What’s in your Netflix queue right now? And have you paid for a reSnap recently?

The third way out of this of this bind is by rethinking distribution systems. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and even Google and Apple are going to war with each other to decide who controls the ad space of the mobile phone screen and the app walled garden. This war has to be fought (I guess) but thinking of these platforms less as content delivery systems, and more as content broadcast systems, would free many creators from the false choice of “Do I or don’t I put an ad in front of my content?” Email and RSS feeds circumvent broadcast systems and go directly to the audience content creators want. This is also the reason that creators on Meerkat and Periscope who are live streaming events (and their lives) are going to have trouble monetizing their content if the platform ever has to respond to the vicissitudes of Wall Street shareholders.

The fourth way out of this bind is by rethinking all the assumptions underpinning the web. The Internet has moved over the last 25 to 30 years, from being a niche communication channel to a worldwide, glorified telecommunications delivery system. What if the Internet shifted from being a global mass bullhorn, to being an individualized, personalized content delivery system? Mobile phone, tablet and app development is pushing the Internet in the direction of this development, but frankly, not far enough. Which is where blockchain technology really comes to the forefront.

The fifth way out of this bind is for content creators to make conscious choices—and stick to them—about how and where to monetize their content with ads. We are not naïve enough to think that advertising will disappear; there were ads broadcasting the services of prostitutes painted on the walls of buildings in Pompeii and Ancient Rome. However, when everyone can publish (but not everyone will publish) everyone has the choice to run a Google ad (or not) in front of specific content, they produce. We run ads in front of The Earbud_U Podcast, but not on the HSCT #Communication Blog, for a reason.

Ad blocking will not be the end of Internet publishing, nor will it serve as the death knell for advertising on the Internet. By defaulting to the opposite of these five alternatives to advertising on the Internet, many content creators will wither away, and die, on the web.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
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