||This article possibly contains original research. (August 2007)|
||This article contains weasel words: vague phrasing that often accompanies biased or unverifiable information. (March 2009)|
In media production and publishing, content is information and experiences that may provide value for an end-user/audience in specific contexts. Content may be delivered via any medium such as the internet, television, and audio CDs, as well as live events such as conferences and stage performances. The word is used to identify and quantify various formats and genres of information as manageable value-adding components of useful media to the target audience.
The word "content" is often used colloquially to refer to media. However, content is more accurately used as a specific term in that it means the content of the medium rather than the medium itself. Likewise, the single word "media" and some compound words that include "media" (e.g. multimedia, hypermedia) are instead referring to a type of content. An example of a type of content commonly referred to as a type of media is a "motion picture" referred to as "a film." The distinction between medium and content is less clear when referring to interactive elements that contain information and are then contained in interactive media, such as dice contained in board games or GUI widgets contained in software.
The author, producer or publisher of an original source of information or experiences may or may not be directly responsible for the entire value that they attain as content in a specific context. For example, part of an original article (such as a headline from a news story) may be rendered on another web page displaying the results of a user's search engine query grouped with headlines from other news publications and related advertisements. The value that the original headline has in this group of query results may be very different from the value that it had in its original article.
It is possible for a person to derive their own value from content in ways that the author didn't plan or imagine. User innovation makes it possible for users to develop their own content from existing content.
Not all information content requires creative authoring or editing. Through recent technological developments such as mobile phones and automated sensors that can record events anywhere for publishing and converting to potentially reach a global audience on channels such as YouTube, most recorded or transmitted information and experiences, can be deemed content.
Technological effects on content
Media production and delivery technology may potentially enhance the value of content by formatting, filtering and combining original sources of content for new audiences with new contexts. The greatest value for a given source of content for a specific audience is often found through such electronic reworking of content as dynamic and real-time as the trends that fuel its interest. Less emphasis on value from content stored for possible use in its original form, and more emphasis on rapid repurposing, reuse, and redeployment has led many publishers and media producers to view their primary function less as originators and more as transformers of content. Thus, one finds out that institutions, that used to focus on publishing printed materials, are now publishing both databases and software to combine content from various sources for a wider-variety of audiences.
While marketing and media interests have broadly adopted the term "content," public reaction has been less enthusiastic. The word is rarely used in conversation, and some individuals actively object to the term. The objections are spread across a considerable spectrum: some complain about the term's inherent ambiguity, others assert that the term devalues the work of authors, and still others argue that it overemphasises the work of authors.
- "A Techie Tech Writer Blog » I hate "content"". Janetswisher.com. Retrieved 2012-02-18.
- Bowie, Adam (2009-11-22). "You See - This Is Why I Hate The Word "Content"". adambowie.com. Retrieved 2012-02-18.
- "Words to Avoid (or Use with Care) Because They Are Loaded or Confusing - GNU Project - Free Software Foundation (FSF)". Gnu.org. 2012-01-31. Retrieved 2012-02-18.
- "Jonathan Salem Baskin's Dim Bulb: I Hate the Word "Content"". Dimbulb.net. 2010-05-10. Archived from the original on 2011-05-10. Retrieved 2012-02-18.
- "Why I hate the word Content - Because you meant to say product. - the little bits of BIG pictures - Site Home - MSDN Blogs". Blogs.msdn.com. 2007-11-18. Retrieved 2012-02-18.
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Why you should choose a profesional content writer - written in 2013, after Google Panda was released.