Content Strategy Forum Conference 2014 Frankfurt, 1-3 July


Eric Reiss

Content, Context, Community – Taking Content Strategy to the boardroom

Content, context, and community from Eric Reiss

Professional factions have made it impossible for executives to make educated decisions - or even understand what the hell we do. Content strategists scream "Content is King." The information architects yell "Structure the kingdom." The SEO folks say, "There is no data without metadata." The interaction designers insist "While any software system introduces some kind of formalization of the world, HCI (like AI) deals with formalizations of human cognition and activity. These are the issues that have lay at the heart of philosophical debate for centuries. In some ways, it would be hard to imagine a more philosophical enterprise."

And the CEO says, "What?"

To which the advertising agencies say "We make you beautiful, rich and famous. Don't ask how we do it, but we can. Just throw money in our direction."

Guess who wins?

If content is king, context must certainly be the kingdom. Perhaps it is time for us to put our words where our mouth is and start applying Content Strategy to Content Strategy, which means thinking about the context of professional communities, of decision makers.

Far too often, "user experience" becomes the elephant described by the blind men –each community is convinced that their unique vantage point is the proper one. So what can we do is to build professional context, and thus convince the business community that our work truly does have value. This is our common challenge.

Let this talk be a call to action to all media professionals. To stop fighting each other, but instead to take up the battle with an uninformed and confused populace – people who mean well, but don't know what to do about it. If we are the smartest kids on the block, and everyone says about us 'plays well with others', why are the bullies get all the attention and earn all the money? I have a plan ...


Eric Reiss, FatDUX