Friday, March 23, 2012

A walk in the park

No, I am not going to write a long, or even any, post on the new uniforms for the Olympic team. But that, for a time yesterday that was the main news on the Daily Mail which, as a newspaper, is better than most at divining what their readers want.

You would think people might learn, because here, we actually have the archetypal "bread and circuses". But the reason the Roman emperors expended huge wealth on them is because it diverted the crowd and kept it occupied, allowing their rulers to get on with other matters undisturbed.

As for the newspapers, one cannot avoid the wry smile at the most viewed on the Failygraph, proving beyond doubt my assertion that the collapse of quality journalism stems from the ever shrinking pool of people who are interested in it. Basically, I wrote, the media produces tat because that is what people are interested in.

Certainly, I find that the greater the care I put into my blog posts, and the more effort I devote to writing original and interesting material, the lower my hit rate.  I've being doing this a long time now, and have a rough idea of what "sells" and what doesn't.  My problem is that I don't really care any more.  It is almost a badge of honour to see the hit rate plummet.

On the other hand, if one devotes the time to crowd pleasers, like this Slog bollox, one need never be short of an audience. Repeat the same bollox and then develop the fantasy and you can always be assured of a crowd.

Unfortunately for Slog-bollox, the world isn't going to end tonight. I can confidently predict that Greece will still be in the euro on Monday. But in Slogland, the sun will still be circling the earth and nothing else will change. People so much enjoy the doom-mongering that they will always return for more.

But then, if Slogdoom is not your style, there is always the royal soap opera with the added value of a little doggie. With animals and royals in the same piece, you can't go wrong.

Tucked at the bottom of the page in The Guardian though is the unwelcome news: fear returns to the market. But we've heard it all before, and if you want serious hyperventilation, you go to Zerohedge anyway. They do it so much better.

Me? I'm going for a walk. I may be some time.