A few months ago I was talking to Brian about whether or not to accept all these page like invites on Facebook. He said to accept them all because it affects FB algorithms for what you see in feeds, friend suggestions, etc.
And with that realization I've come to the conclusion that technology is damaging art.
I remember when we started Spinetingler almost 13 years ago. In the
beginning you want to get a lot of content. More content meant coming up
in more searches which boosted our ranking in search engines and raised
Comparable to how I guess those FB algorithms work.
The problem is that you have to maintain standards. Let's say I'm really
interested in seeing content about cat mysteries on social media. I'm
invited to like pages by 100 different authors. 5 write cat mysteries.
10 write hard-boiled stories. 30 write science fiction. 40 write romance
and the rest write Westerns and self-help books.
Is friending all of them going to boost the amount of cat mystery content I see? Nope. 95% of what I'd see would have nothing to do with cat mysteries.
That may seem simplistic but the applications are broad. I once thought
Netflix had, of all the streaming services outside HBO, the best
original content. One can't deny the quality of early seasons of Orange
is the New Black or House of Cards. There were awards and nominations
and streaming was no longer treated like self-publishing used to be.
Streaming services gained respect.
But then something happened. For every Stranger Things there was a Between. Sometimes, there was more than one dud.
Netflix, it seems, has gone for quantity over quality. And while my
habit used to be to log into Netflix first I have been turning to Hulu
and Amazon Prime more and more for programming.
I actually questioned a few months ago if we needed to continuously maintain our Netflix account. It's the streaming service we've had the longest... But suspect decisions have undermined its dominance in the streaming world.
I'm not the only one to take note of the trend.
The thing is, this isn't about Netflix. It's about a philosophy with any
type of artistic production. If you're publishing short stories then if
readers find that you tend to have 15% great stories, 35% decent
stories and 50% bad to just forgettable stories they are not going to
pay to read an issue of stories you put out. Now, you have to allow for some subjectivity. Taste is a factor. But we're talking ballpark. If you consistently put out material that's filled with typos, missing words, logic flaws and underdeveloped plots and characters people will notice.
And as a writer, everything you produce sells your next work.
There's a temptation early on to want to add to your publishing credits
but that won't benefit you in the long run if what you produce isn't good.
Sometimes, waiting to invest in the right material is the best way to
build a reputation. There's plenty of crap out there already. As a
writer and editor I'm looking for what rises to the top. There has to be something about that story that I really want to tell.
The rest is best forgotten.