Memo to the Financial Times: An Internet backlash does not mean a return to local. It means something much darker is brewing.

Journalists are odd creatures. They hold grudges against certain collectives, and then misuse their positions to write articles and column warning people of the dangers — and do not trust alternative sources of information.

Nice try.

Financial Post has such a scary bedtime story.


Big Tech is a threat to privacy, and humanity…and there is a backlash because of it, but there will be a reckoning, and people will want local news, and desire for truth.

You have got to be kidding me.

The truth will not come from journalism. That ship has sailed when one too many lies spilled from their broadcasts and pages. They began the lie-fest by spewing press releases and crafting narratives that always favoured rich white men.

And they still do that.

Will there be a backlash? Yes, as I have mentioned before. but not for the reasons mentioned in that piece.

It has to do with what the Internet promised people: to have the power to broadcast themselves in every way to have a global audience without those meddlers the traditional media serving as a bouncer at a nightclub.

That was the deal, and that deal implied that people could be discovered. It is the reason why selfies exploded, and we created a Live Out Loud generation.

And not only could your presence by brought the whole world, the whole world could be brought to you.

Apps to bring you a ride, food, clothing, lovers, books, jobs, hotel stays, airline reservations, you name it.

It was all so easy. It was paradise.

Except it didn’t happen.

That’s where the seeds of discontent were planted.

Not because journalism got the whumping it so richly earned.

Journalists are behaving like the wife whose husband is having an affair with a younger, hipper woman who is more fun and more accommodating to him, and she absolutely convinced her husband will break up with the mistress, come back to his senses, and crawl back to her, learning a very valuable lesson.

Even after he divorced her, married the other woman, had new children with her, moved to another continent, and moved on.

He may even break up with his second wife, but he is not coming back. He is not going back to something that gave him more rules and fewer perks. He is going to look for someone else.

That is the way of journalism. It can no longer expect to be relevant when Big Tech liberated people. People are not going to sit there and listen to the old nagging.

They will leave the Internet, but it will not be a step back.

But a bold new leap forward.

Journalism didn’t make the necessarily changes in business model, techniques, or attitude. You may have had a captive audience for a few decades, but the Internet liberated those audience, and they will look to something else that gives them even more freedom.

A new promise will be made. They will weigh their options and try something new, as they have learned the sky didn’t fall when they abandoned journalism.

But you need an alternative to journalism that is in tune with that Fifth Medium.

And it sure isn’t journalism. Something darker is brewing — an ugly mood that stemmed from the Internet’s broken promises. A fifth medium can dispel that ugliness, but journalism cannot.

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