Out There Versus In Here

July 25, 2010

When was the last time someone came up to you in real life and said, “Oh, I just saw this thing on The Huffington Post that you must read.” Or: “Damn, you gotta see what TechCrunch just ran!”

How many people in the real world have heard of John Gruber? Doc Searls? Tim O’Reilly?

Now, how many people have said to you, “I just saw that ad on TV.” Or: “You must read this article in The New York Times.”

How many people in the real world don’t know who Katie Couric is? Rush Limbaugh? Bill O’Reilly?

These questions are apropos of the two things I just posted here and here.

Most people heard of the iPhone through TV, and international MSM coverage, not the Internet.

Most people learned of the Kindle through that Newsweek cover, TV, and international MSM coverage.

There’s a great mistake people on the Internet make: Thinking “in here” is greater than “out there.”

“Out there” we are at war with two nations and an international philosophy devoted to martyrdom.

“In here” we argue about the things that concern us.

Those two circles hardly ever overlap.

Even with something as pervasive as the introduction of the iPhone, what people were thinking of about it “out there” was tremendously different than the discussion we were all having about it “in here.”

Apple understands the difference between “out there” and “in here.” Which is why it advertises primarily “out there” and lets all of us “in here” spread the word on our own.

Most of us use ad blockers or are simply used to ignoring elements on a page past that we’re arrived to look at. When people came to my blogs, it was usually through a link they’ve seen elsewhere. And the overwhelming number of people read that thing — and then went away.

They don’t devote any time to going through the rest of a blog. It’s in and out, like sex with a prostitute. Give me what I’m here for and then we each go our separate ways.

That doesn’t happen “out there.” Sure, people can skip commercials with a DVR or skip pages in magazine or newspaper — but in those instances, something else tends to catch their eye and they will look.

That hardly ever happens “in here,” where we are all such efficient multitasking consumers.

So when I read about advertising dying “out there,” I stop to wonder just what exactly is going to take its place?

Are we all going to be suckered by people with fake personas created to draw us to their blogs and sites in order to be shilled things via unstated Pay Per Post methods?

This is not an academic question and I bring it up because it concerns how writers are going to engage with potential readers — who mostly live “out there.”

We’ve read accounts of writers who have used the Internet to go on to success — but I’m very skeptical of those. Not that their work wasn’t good enough to succeed, but I always wonder what bits in their history we’re not being given. Did they have a friend who was a publicist? Did they convince one of the large sites to cover them — which led to a cascade of links elsewhere?

Trust me on this: If most writers have to make a living “in here,” they will starve to death.

“Out there” must be engaged.

But if the media that reaches “out there” drops dead due to lack of advertising, what’s left?

I’m indebted to the ever-cheery Rex Hammock for stimulating this thinking with another post of his: The web is a place. This blog is me.


July 25, 2010

Advertising is fucked.

Advertising is next

July 25, 2010

I have written extensively, and with admiration, about the company’s advertising and how, when others were dismissing the effectiveness of advertising in magazines or, frankly, of the effectiveness of advertising anywhere “but the web,” Apple spent heavily (and effectively) on everything but online advertising (as a percentage of their advertising budget) and in so doing, grew market share. Let me say that again: Over the past four years, Apple has remained committed to advertising heavily in such “traditional media” as print (including newspapers, but especially magazines), TV and outdoor advertising to launch products and build market share for existing products while most companies diverted larger and larger portions of their budgets into online efforts that have been, for most, a rat hole with very little ROI.

Rex Hammock’s RexBlog.com » Blog Archive » The real news: The Apple PR machine attenuates

I’ll Skip Books That Use This

July 25, 2010

If the book meets both the professionalism criteria and is considered “compelling” by a reviewer, it is given the IndieProse seal of approval. The author then pays an additional $100 fee to be listed on the Indieprose site and to have a review of his/her book posted on Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, and GoodReads.

Just what we need! A ratings agency like Moody’s for direct-published books. And we all saw how well Moody’s has worked out for the entire worldwide economy, right? Right?

July 25, 2010

Way back in 1988 I wrote my first novel, Roofworld, about disaffected youths living in rooftop communities. It’s taken 22 years, but it looks like that future has finally arrived. This is Dmitri Yermakov, 18. He’s part of a youth subculture that has taken shape in Moscow. Its adherents are called Roofers, and they gain access to Moscow’s buildings not for criminal intent, but to climb the roofs.

Roofworld Comes True « Christopher Fowler’s Blog

July 25, 2010

Samuel Beckett: Debts and Legacies, 2010 (seminar page) | Backdoor Broadcasting Company


July 25, 2010

The more I consider that image, the more offensive it becomes.

The people trading there don’t give a damn for this country. They’ve proven that. Yet they wear the American flag as a mask for their evil.

Evil which is manifested in the form of a human being just a few blocks away: