October 30, 2014

Have you cut the cord from traditional media?


Now you can add Pluto.TV to your mix of news and curation sources

Ayelet NoffOften I find myself stopping and considering just how far we’ve come as a society. The information age has brought about so much that you can find out about just about anything with a couple of taps or mouse clicks. However, this overflow of information is a mixed blessing: When you have so much information flowing in from so many sources, how do you separate what’s important from the noise?

That question is the reason why, despite so many advances in media, people still rely on old-fashioned outlets, such as newspapers, radio and television, as a source for hardcore news. When it comes to subjects of profound international concern and impact, like the rise of ISIS for instance, traditional outlets have an advantage: professional framing and analysis. While there are definitely a lot of bloggers out there who are just as knowledgeable as journalists who work for traditional media, the blogosphere in general has fewer filters – and that can be a problem when you’re dealing with subject matter as delicate as militant jihadists.

A new generation of news consumers turns to social media

Professional journalists dedicate their lives to understanding a certain subject (as do many bloggers, don’t get me wrong). And, in my experience, the fact that they’re paid to keep abreast of developments in their field gives them an edge in reporting on what’s going on in their field. So, while some people might argue that bloggers have an advantage by not having to abide by any rules of the road, in some cases these constraints serve a purpose – such as making sure reporters adhere to journalistic standards of integrity and objectivity.

However, the mutually beneficial relationship between journalists and traditional outlets leaves a major part of their target audience out of the loop. I like to call these overlooked people ‘‘cord-cutters’’ – the people who get the majority of their information online. Just because these people don’t own a TV set doesn’t mean they don’t want to be informed – and you’d be surprised by just how much of their news intake comes from social media.

ISIS knows this. The Islamic State goes to great lengths to recruit young Muslims from around the world, using the same social media that young people use. And the biggest problem this presents is that it gives ISIS total and unfiltered control over the content or propaganda they are spreading. It’s safe to assume there’s an overlap between the cord-cutters and the aforementioned users of social networks, so having a platform on which cord-cutters can get the entire story is paramount.

Pluto.TV enters the picture

What can work is a combination of old and new: a new-media platform presenting content created by traditional media. A great example for such a mix is Pluto.TV (disclosure: Pluto.TV is a Blonde 2.0 client). It is a curated video platform that offers a continuous stream that can be viewed from any device. Pluto.TV has curation experts who sift through the incomprehensible amount of video out there and present them in a TV channel for the Internet.

Recently, Pluto.TV launched ISIS: A Special Report, a channel that offers non-stop coverage of the organization. The channel offers documentaries, news reports, and even live events from various sources. ISIS: A Special Report is a great way for cord-cutters to stay informed without having to turn to traditional media.

I’m not going to get into politics or my personal opinion of ISIS, but I will say this: It is an organization that you should stay informed about. The impact it has on the Middle East and the ripple effects its actions create worldwide could very well be a phenomenon that will define our era. And, with such an overflow of information on so many platforms and networks, it’s great to have something like Pluto.TV to sort through the mess for you.Ayelet Noff is a partner in Socialmedia.biz and founder and Co-CEO of Blonde 2.0, an award winning digital PR agency with branches in Boston and Tel Aviv. Contact Ayelet via The Blonde 2.0 website , email, or follow her on Twitter and Google Plus.

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