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Big Noises: Ricky Sutton on publisher valuations, AI, and platform frenemies

Big Noises: Ricky Sutton on publisher valuations, AI, and bears

Ricky Sutton talks about the frenemy relationship of publishers and platforms, the role of AI, and how to talk your way into covering a war.


On this week’s episode of Media Voices’ Big Noises series we hear from Ricky Sutton, a man who has straddled both the journalistic and tech industries. He tells us about the media militancy, why we need media plurality and why he thinks publisher cohesion is vital for ensuring that.

He says: “I don’t think [platforms] set themselves up to be an enemy. But if they see that the path they’re taking is take them to a trillion dollars, [they’re not] going to stop are they? And if they mow us down as they go, that’s okay. Somebody at Google said to me once…’The way we see ourselves is that we’re like a big friendly bear, and we’re in bed together. I think you’re terrific, I really liked you. But during the night, unbeknownst to me, I accidentally rolled over and smothered you and killed you. That’s how we feel.’”

Now the extent to which Google is a bear at all – much less a friendly one – is going to divide our industry. But there’s an awful lot in this interview with Ricky that speaks to the need for both publishers and platforms to find common ground that I think anyone would struggle to argue with.


Reddit is killing its Gold awards system

Reddit is sunsetting its coins and awards system, but promises that it’s working on a new, simpler rewards system.

It’s easy to forget that other social media platforms exist, given all the focus on Twitter and Meta’s platforms. But Reddit has always been a source of Big Hits for publishers – if you made it to the front page of Reddit you were pretty much guaranteed a lot of attention. Well, that’s liable to change, as its rewards system is being reappraised.


Introducing the ‘How To Fix Climate Journalism’ Essay Series

When the Oxford Climate Journalism Network officially began in January 2022, we had very few definitive answers to offer journalists when they asked what would make climate journalism “work.”

Yes, good, great, wonderful. Like I said on Twitter (remember Twitter?) climate journalism needs to be spread across every desk, not just a desk in its own right. From sustainability to greenwashing to representation, the industry needs to be rethinking its approach to climate journalism. This is a great step in that direction.


Mail chief says Brexit was bad for advertising

Chief revenue officer at Mail Metro Media admits his conclusion is ironic

This is one of those things I’ve never understood about the right-wing papers’ support for Brexit. They knew it would impoverish the public (or were stupid enough to believe it wouldn’t, which is equally deplorable) and yet chose to support it. Well, now it’s obviously hitting their bottom lines. Not to the extent it’s hurting the public they’re supposed to protect, but still.

Media Voices


Big Noises: Mpho Raborife on keeping Gen Z engaged

Mpho Raborife is Managing Editor at news24, a South African-based news outlet with a primarily Millennial staff and audience.


Raising the calibre of climate coverage through journalism collectives

With 2022 seeing record heat across Europe and global weather extremes, newspapers and broadcasters are investing more in climate journalism.


Media Voices at FIPP Congress 2023: Resilience in the face of disruption

Peter Houston headed back to Cascais for FIPP Congress 2023, and heard from leading publishers about building resilience.

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