The journalistic platform Blendle was launched in 2014 by Alexander Klöpping and Marten Blankesteijn. They came up with the idea of an online Kiosk, in which you pay per article. An innovative journalistic start-up that was a result of frustration of the traditional consumption of news.
Four years later I want to look at the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of Blendle in the current media market.
First of all, a strong characteristic of Blendle is that they put their consumers first. A good example is their renewal of services. At the start of this year they introduced Premium-service, which made the daily newsletter and choice of articles even more personal. Also, readers have input through feedback about articles and services.
A weakness can be seen in their financial model in relation to their partners. In the past year, the NRC and Follow the Money dropped their cooperation because their participation on Blendle wasn’t profitable for them. And this is also where a threat for a journalistic platform such as Blendle arises. If quality papers are resigning and their will be less content available, can you keep your audience satisfied?
The biggest opportunity and (also challenge) for Blendle is to keep readers interested in their platform and work together with them. I think they can do that by interacting even more with their public and talk with media-experts about innovation, but also stick to idea of providing readers with good journalism.
And this is also where Deuze and Witschge come in:
Under conditions of a changing media culture that is more interactive and co-creative (Jenkins, 2006), media professionals as well as their audiences are increasingly (expected to be) working together, to converse and co-create.
What will happen in the future? I’m sure Blendle will keep on surprising us.
By Anne Myrthe Korvinus
Word count: 297
- Deuze, M., Witschge, T. “Beyond journalism: Theorizing the transformation of journalism.” Journalism (2017).