Platforms vs. Publishers: A Big New Theory
All of a sudden, the distinction between publishers and platforms on the web is hazy. Twitter is a publisher now? Gawker, a platform? Figuring out the difference reveals a lot about how content is made and consumed on the internet these days, and it's a lot different than just a few years ago. Media brands, from Facebook to BuzzFeed to the New York Times, used to be pure platforms or pure publishers, but now they position themselves somewhere on a spectrum between the two. And the spot they choose reveals a lot about their business strategy, sense of selves, and ability to innovate in the future. These are existential questions, but the answers point to very practical strategies for making stuff that people might actually want to read and share, even pay for.
Additional Supporting Materials
- What is the difference between a platform and a publisher, and why does it matter?
- How do various media brands position themselves on the spectrum between platform and publisher—and more importantly, why?
- What accounts for the shift from pure platforms and pure publishers to media companies that are somewhere in between?
- What can publishers learn from the content and business strategies of platforms, and vice versa?
- What kind of stuff do people consume, respond to, and share on the internet these days?
- Zach Seward Quartz
Zach Seward Quartz
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