Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Bezos and The Post: Business Opportunity But Also Risky For News

The titans of our day, especially in media, has shown that they cannot help but interfere and interject their views in how their news and media properties, print, broadcast, or online, express their opinions on social and political issues of our day.

Fox News is an example.  Whether you agree with how Murdoch's cable news infotainment channel reports on issues and if you're honest with yourself, you know Fox ain't "fair" nor "balanced".  Just like MSNBC isn't either.

In case you're not aware, Amazon's Jeff Bezos bought the Washington Post for $250 million just a few days ago.  It's a grand opportunity for a tech titan whose company, Amazon, has reshaped commerce in a bit way all over the way world.

And while, I have a generally positive view about this, like others, I'm watching to see what Bezos does with the Post and whether editorially, the reporting will skew towards his views on commerce, the government, and even space travel to benefit his other enterprises.

So, we will have to see if Amazon's Jeff Bezos won't interfere with a bad review of an Amazon service or product like the Kindle platform.  I mean, seriously, the itch to do that is just too tempting.  Or to place an article or two about Amazon's competitors or influence space programs towards his own.

This friendly Wired post seems to suggest that Bezos bought the Post on his own to take pressure off Amazon because, well, right now, stockholders might be okay with a profitless e-commerce company investing in the future but not if it also is saddled with a print media in an industry that is dying a slow painful clueless death.

The Wired post goes on to speculate how Amazon will benefit from the political influence the Post can bring to bear on Washington.  While, I'm not sure the opinion of one man or even just one company is a good thing to have so much power, Wired did not seem to mind it at all.

Regardless of why Bezos chose to buy the Post out of his own pocket, how Bezos transformed the entire print media is going to be very exciting to watch.  I agree with the Wired post on one point.  Bezos did not go blindly into this deal just to influence Washington or public opinion.

He bought Washington Post because he has a plan in place already.  We'll just have to see what it is and who benefits the most from it.

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