Turkish Online News

Online news is an interesting category in the Turkish internet market.  There are 22, I repeat, 22 websites at which you can read news in the top 100 web properties in Turkey, according to Alexa. (That number includes newspaper sites, online news sites, large portals with a major "news" category and sports news.)  This is quite an anomaly.  To compare, that number is 10 in the UK.

Most of these websites either take news content prepared for an offline news outlet and repurpose it for online consumption.  Others just aggregate and shallowly edit the wire services output.  There are even others that strive to replicate a traditional news production environment to feed into pure online consumption.

What seems to be missing in the Turkish market is a born-on-the-web news property, explicitly designed and tech-enabled for online consumption, that creates a community around itself.  I think there's quite a bit of overlap between what I am trying to describe and what Umair Haque talks about in his Nichepaper Manifesto:

Nichepapers are different because they have built a profound mastery
of a tightly defined domain — finance, politics, even entertainment —
and offer audiences deep, unwavering knowledge of it.

Nichepapers aren't a new product, service, or business model. They are a new institution. They're
a living example of the institutional innovation that is the key to
21st century business. They're not the same old newspaper, sold a
different way. They are 21st century newspapers, built on new rules,
that are letting radical innovators reinvent what "news" is.

According to Umair, the model involves the following tenets: 

Knowledge, not news.

Commentage, not commentary.

Topics, not articles.

Scarcity, not circulation.

Now, not then.

Provocation, not perfection.

Snowballs, not sell-outs.

Tasks, not tech.

These points describe a fantastic starting point. I think there would be a prize for the property that is able to accomplish the above points in the Turkish market.  The closest example I can think of is the HuffPo.  Umair adds Talking Points Memo, Perez Hilton and, one of my favorite websites, Business Insider.

However, I am trying to define a property that is beyond Umair's
nichepaper.  They could work in niches and narrowly focused topics.  But, I suspect, in the news-hungry Turkish market, a property incorporating these principles can succeed with a broader, generalist focus, as well.  In fact, the economics of Turkish online advertising may dictate that it becomes broader focused to attain critical traffic mass enough for major advertising access.

5 thoughts on “Turkish Online News

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