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A bit of a heavy-duty start to the morning, my apologies. But given Troy Young was one of the leaders instrumental in the transformation of Hearst Magazines over the past decade, his thoughts on the topic are worth a read.
“There’s a straight line to be drawn from our media past to our social media present to our AI future,” Young states. He thinks the social media era may have prepared us for the next chapter.
“It has taught us to examine information’s veracity and provenance more carefully. We pay far more attention to privacy rights and our personal data sovereignty. We’ve ratcheted up controls for malicious information spread. And we are demanding much more transparency from the black boxes that control what we see.”
I don’t entirely share his optimism (we’ve far from solved the issues social media ushered in), but I can see where he’s coming from.
Spotify on Monday confirmed that it’s shutting down Spotify Live, just weeks after Reddit said it would shutter its live audio product Reddit Talk. Clubhouse, once hailed as the next big social platform, has seen downloads fall 56% worldwide over the past 12 months. Mind you, Twitter Spaces still lives…for now.
Three fascinating stories here from Eunice Magwambo, Purity Mukami and Juliet Atellah who discuss their work and the challenges faced by data journalists in Kenya. “Understanding audiences is key,” says Atellah. “Knowing how to go in-depth, and not just throwing numbers is also important. You should ask yourself: how do you get a story that your audience will read or watch and go back to later because it captivated them?”
Some very interesting takeaways in this piece. Subscriber cyclones aside, I found the last one thought-provoking: “As an industry, we run the risk of becoming biased towards the preferences of our existing subscriber base, which is mostly composed of older individuals. By solely relying on their behaviour and interests to inform our decisions regarding content, products, and strategies, we risk hindering our subscription growth with younger audiences.”
More from Media Voices
Listen again: BehanBox Founder Bhanupriya Rao on telling the stories of women and gender diverse people in India
Reading about the challenges the Kenyan data journalists face reminded me of the episode we published with Bhanupriya Rao last year. She talked about the inequalities in access to news and information that many women in India face, and the importance of data in their reporting.