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Will people please stop using the Internet to "make money" ?!

Will people please stop using the Internet to "make money" ?!

That famed UK pop-gossip/tittle-tattle site Holy Moly talks to MediaGuardian. And reveals throughout that rather than being some kind of seedy teenager trapped in the toilets of Media Whorehouse Central, he is in fact a married 30-something Northerner who wants to “turn the site into a successful business model”. Any donations you make to the site, goes to him to buy more fashionable clothes.

Call me insane and hippy-esque, but it’s disgraceful. I do wish people would stop seeing the Internet through nothing but green-paper-tinted glasses. It’s people like Holy Moly who, seeing the Internet emerging from the geeky computer labs of the world, saw nothing but a chance to make money – and in the process raised, and then ruined the hopes and careers of an awful lot of people. Whereas if the Internet had had a chance to grow organically and in a sustainable manner, then New Media wouldn’t be in the quarter-life crisis that it currently is in.

The Internet is a communications medium, nothing more and nothing less. You make money by giving people what they want, be it goods, a date or naked pictures. If they can’t get it any other way, then they’ll pay for it (live football, pregnant porn, whatever) but in a land where there are a billion choices, they’ll just go for the free alternative. There’s no point trying to make a cool brand for cool people and then begging for donations and selling T-shirts of your crass Photoshopped logo – you’re not going to make enough money to feed a small family of Guatemalan rats.

The gravy train has moved on, people. Stop sniffling for the leftovers.

3 Comments

  • Whoa now. There's a bit of a generalisation if ever I saw one. Let's just get a couple of things straight:

    1. Clearly there's no problem in principle with e-commerce. Otherwise there would be no bookpa- oh, err… Amazon. Or Firebox. Or ThinkGeek. Or any online business (which are founded on business plans, rather than community spirit, assuming they know anything about business). However, despite the title of your post, I figure this isn't what you're driving at.

    2. The Internet is as valid a place as any to develop and nurture a new brand. So much so, that several new brands only exist online. There are dozens of examples of this, but some blossoming new brands that are in my radar at the moment include:

    – Penny Arcade (www.penny-arcade.com)
    – Mambo (www.mamboserver.com)
    – Xbox Media Center (www.xboxmediacenter.com)

    I've cited these because they're all unconventional, all at early stages, and all born online. And like almost all brands, they have extended into branded merchandise. In some cases this is done in response to user demand, in others it's an attempt to support hosting costs (you're right, profits are minimal, but then so are overheads). But whatever their reasons, I see no problem in their attempts to solidify their brands through branded gear.

    Now for all that, you may only be pissed at brands you don't connect to, but that's no reason to take a swipe against 'making money on the internet' in general. After all, until lately you weren't too proud to fish for some Amazon affiliate pennies…

  • Well said. And they can add my former blog hosts to that list >:P

    The "selling T-shirts of your crass Photoshopped logo" is waaaay to close to home for some of my acquaintances…as much as I'd like to quote this to them, I won't 😉

  • Fame and fortune, innit?

    He's just another meeja bloodsucker furthering his career and hoping to go on to bigger and better things (that's probably why he gave the interview – to rustle up a bit of interest and get people to track him down)

    Chap from "Shoreditch Twat" now writes for the Guardian Guide, chap from "Heat" magazine pops up on TV a lot, the article itself mentions a transition from "Popbitch" to "The Face".

    Belle du Jour, anyone?

    Love or money? Might be love to start with but it usually ends in money.

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