Another DAM Blog

Blog about Digital Asset Management


Is the journal dead?

Over the last few months of 2010,  several sources have mentioned and even confirmed that a particular periodical about Digital Asset Management (DAM) has ceased publication. Some deny this in disbelief. Some believe it will be reincarnated like a phoenix out of the ashes. or not.

Many DAM Professionals have generously contributed (for free) written content on their knowledge about DAM which this periodical published over the past several years. The same periodical was made available at over US$700 (the undiscounted US price) for 6 issues per annual subscription. Sounds like a deal for someone aside from the readers and the writers.

While charging over US$1 per page, I can not imagine why this journal would cease its publication in today’s digital market. After all, readers…oh wait. Never mind.

Anyhow, DAM Professionals have been able to share their own knowledge at their own great expense and then have prior articles available online at a fee per article. Hopefully, these articles will continue to be available online but the stone tablet… I mean paper edition may cease to exist.

Some say the journal will take the form (like a phoenix) of an e-zine in 2011 and likely be called something else. And…is it still the same thing then? This e-zine may be offered for a faction of what the journal cost. Imagine that. They may have found the last nails for that coffin to bury that idea.

How else will we read or even write about Digital Asset Management aside from books?

Let us think for a nanosecond. What are you reading right now? A blog.

Blogs don’t matter. No one reads blogs anymore. Blogs are dead. Explain why this blog has more unique readers than any periodical about Digital Asset Management ever had as well as many of the other dedicated blogs about DAM. Shall we continue ignoring the impact of the monthly or sometimes even daily information shared by this medium (blogging) on the field of the Digital Asset Management? What other medium does this today?

In full disclosure, I was interviewed by this particular periodical. It took one year to get published. Not 6 months as they said it would. They “forgot” to while I reminded them every few months. This might be considered fast…if the standards were set by cave men carving stone.

If you didn’t pay for it, remember it can’t be any good. One of their editors asked me if I could ‘wrap up’ some of my blog posts into an article for the periodical. I checked to make sure if I understood them correctly. They wanted me to take my blog posts (which I write and share free of charge), spend my time writing their article for their journal (uncompensated), they would publish it (I would remain still uncompensated) and they sell free content back to you as a subscriber of this journal. So they profit from the work and knowledge of others who provide this for free. Who in their right mind still does this in today’s digital age? Here is an idea: If it’s free, it stays free. If it costs, all should be compensated for creating the end result.

Blogs don’t have a good reputation. Reputation comes from the creator of content and/or the value of content itself. Reputation does not come from the channel (such as a blog) which simply a vehicle for the message (whether it is fact or opinion) nor what the channel (such as a journal) charges for its content. In case you need to be published for the sake of your work, explore more cost effective ways than custom publishing and trade journals. You can do it yourself for free nowadays and you can market it more widely and better (using social media) than those you have paid to deliver and market your content today. Who buys content based on who published it rather than the value of the content itself or the writer’s reputation? Content still rules.

After heavily filtering my response, I reminded the editors they were still sitting on the interview they did with me and I declined their offer to ‘wrap up’ any of my free blog posts for them to profit from or re-publish.

If you blog, you don’t have to wait for anyone to publish. You can leave the greedy, the pathetically slow and the technically un-inclined to fail without your content and knowledge.

I am not bitter.  Just continue paying lots of money to get free content that was regurgitated into another form. It is your money.

Both readers and writers deserve better.

Is the journal dead? I have more nails and a shovel if someone needs them.

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Why should I care about the DAM Community?

In the past few years, I have been asked a lot of questions by people…

  • Who are you doing this for?”
  • Who really reads this stuff?”
  • What is in it for you?”
  • Why do you do all this for free?”
  • Why do you care so much?”

I wanted to take the opportunity to explore these questions and explain…

A few years ago, when I started working with Digital Asset Management (DAM), there were a few conferences, a few books, an expensive journal and experts who knew what they were talking about. All those still exist, but now DAM is growing.

Who are you doing this for?

It all started when I was frustrated and had very few people to discuss DAM with (how many of you can relate to this?). I learned about DAM myself, I volunteered to work on DAM, but in the past, found it difficult to communicate with people who knew little or nothing about DAM. I learned how to explain why DAM is important. I also wondered why  I could not find much on the first-hand experience with DAM explained, specifically in the user and administrator perspective of Digital Asset Management. I knew I was not the only person with this question. So, out of frustration, I started blogging about DAM.

After my second blog post, I was contacted by people who could relate to what I wrote about and they love/hate my blog to this day. I was even offered to be paid to blog for them. The day I drafted my first blog post, I decided early on that my blog was for everyone to share openly and learn about DAM in the user and administrator perspective. I do not talk about using DAM product X or DAM vendor Y, but rather I stay vendor agnostic. In order to stay vendor agnostic, I would not take money from DAM vendors (and I still don’t). If you have read my blog posts before, you will note I hold very little back and I am very open about what I talk about.

Who really reads this stuff?

Literally, thousands of people all over the world read my blog posts every month. My blog is aggregated on other sites which also get a lot of traffic. Some of my posts are more popular than others. Content is king. I deliver a fair amount of content in many of my blog posts. There are other DAM bloggers as well. I happily list them on blog roll when I find out about them. Sharing the experience is good. DAM is all about sharing. I know most people read about DAM during weekdays (I don’t blame them), so that is when I normally schedule new posts to appear. DAM users, potential DAM users, DAM vendors and even DAM analysts tell me they read my blog regularly.

What is in it for you?

When I have the energy, time and a DAM related idea to write about, I blog about it. I do this on my spare time. Blogging is a hobby. DAM is my career. Due to the popularity of my blog posts, I am invited to speak and moderate at conferences around the United States. When I go to events, I get to meet like-minded people…eager to share experiences and best practices about DAM. If I have a DAM idea to blog about, but don’t have the time to blog about it, I make a quick audio recording with a speech-to-text app which sends me an email with what I said, so I can revisit it later when I do have the time.

Why do you do all this for free?

To this day, I am not paid to present at conferences nor to blog.  Yes, that is correct. I did not charge the people I mentored on a monthly basis either. I get motivated by helping others understand the subject. If someone really wanted me to consult for their organization, they could ask me directly. For the most part, I write in general terms about DAM. My generosity of information pays a multitude of dividends. People have told me and written that I happen to be one of the top bloggers in the field of Digital Asset Management. I do not believe this is by accident. How do you communicate you are experienced and knowledgeable about a subject such as DAM? hint: you genuinely share that knowledge by blogging about it. People read and hear about it. People recognize what you write makes sense. People learn and benefit from what is shared. And you repeat this often.)

My goal was write and share 52 blog posts per year. Done.

Why do you care so much?

Yes, someone actually asked me all these questions. I love this question so much, it inspired me to write this specific blog post. Why should I care so much? Why should anyone care about the DAM community? Not only will you learn first hand you are not alone in thinking about and using DAM, you will become part of a group of people who want to learn, get/give feedback and share experiences. It can be a career. It is for me and many others. You will soon find out I am not the only one. These days, it does not matter where you are geographically located because you can be a member of the DAM Community in person and/or online. What matters is whether you are willing to learn and share your interest in Digital Asset Management to not only survive, but thrive with DAM.

Let us know when you are ready for consulting on Digital Asset Management for your business.