I work as an author, but also worked as a journalist, an artist, and an educator, and those three seemingly different careers have one big thing in common: they are Content careers.
Content is what people read, or learn, or see. A book without content is blank. A canvas without content is blank. A classroom without content is empty.
Musicians are also content creators. Playwrights are content creators, too, whose work animate actors to perform their works, but even actors are content creators.
Fashion designers and goldsmiths are also content creators.
And yet it is the content creators who are the least respected when it comes to the business side of industries that would not exist without content creators.
It does not matter if the work is fiction or nonfiction: there is nothing without content, but content providers are given a poor shake, often on contract work being precariously employed unless they are in the top one percent, but even that is no guarantee. Big today; broke tomorrow.
And yet those whose operations require a never-ending stream of content tend to be very well-heeled, even in bad times.
Having respect for content creators is essential to keep industries healthy, but we have yet to see industries practice what they preach. They figure the masses truly are asses, and can be told to cheer for garbage, and they will do it.
It doesn’t matter what is the content…and yet, that’s not true, either.
Content can shape and guide. It informs and opens up new worlds of thought.
But content must be the focus on journalism’s alternative. The vehicle is equally important, but should be a partnership — not seeing the providers as exploitable units who are the afterthought…