Financial Outfits As Publishers: News? Objectivity? You Have to Be Kidding

June 21, 2021

I read “Andreessen Horowitz and the Future of Media.” Intriguing. I noted this statement in the write up: (Note that I did not use the word essay, news, report, or analysis.)

First, here’s my view on Future. It’s a bunch of essays. They’re not competing with reporters.

Correct.

I noted this statement too:

I have another concern: non-cooperation makes it harder for the media to get the facts right and to follow the reporting.

I like the phrase “non cooperation.” Certain businesses thrive on non cooperation. There is a caveat; that is, unless one is an insider. Need an example? How about the intelware business? These are firms which you may struggle to figure out exactly what they do and for whom. Let me name one for you. How about Utimaco? I have a list of a number of these outfits. Non cooperation is a business precept.

Here’s the conclusion to the “Future of Media” write up:

While Andreessen’s new publication might have a more optimistic point of view, Future is pumping out a form of content that the internet is already chock-full of these days — takes.

I like the word “take.”

Now here’s what I think is going on:

First, financial outfits have been publishers for many, many years. Check out Investext. The purpose of these documents has been to facilitate churn in order to generate money. Sure, the wolf is wearing an MBA robe, and the truth has never been hidden. People just don’t think about the content pumped out by the money biz. Future is nothing new in my opinion.

Second, content marketing distorts perception. The outputs of financial institutions are designed to shape one’s viewpoint, the “frame” of a topic, product, service, etc. Thus, a financial institution generating content addresses two issues: Control of the message and generation of churn. (Moving money from one place to another with an intermediary or market maker in the middle.)

Third, the excitement a Silicon Valley outfit is generating by packaging its outputs for others than high net worth individuals, institutional investors, and insiders is like Clubhouse. This is a PR, marketing, and attention play.

Madison Avenue meets Silicon Valley in a world of reformation, information, disinformation, and misinformation. I would use the phrase “green journalism” to describe these financial media efforts, but instead of greenbacks, the word evokes wind turbines and solar panels.

I am going to go with content marketing and move on.

Stephen E Arnold, June 21, 2021

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One Response to “Financial Outfits As Publishers: News? Objectivity? You Have to Be Kidding”

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