This Disruption Will Be Syndicated

Here’s a teaser of the post I just submitted over at Morph. I’ll update this post with the full text tomorrow, but since the point of the guest-blogging is to help Morph grow, I’m hoping you’ll check it out over there, and perhaps subscribe to their Feed. Read the full post here.

Now that it’s been some time, I’m reposting my “article” here for my own archival purposes. To wit:

Over the holidays, Peter Zollman released a report (partially) quantifying the impact Craigslist is having on the (recruitment) classified listing business of (local) newspapers.

While many who provided commentary on the the implications of the report noted ‘surprise’, I immediately thought of Gil Scott-Heron’s Revolution Will Not Be Televised.

There’s nothing to be surprised about here folks. Despite Craig Newmark’s repeated claims that Craigslist isn’t a threat to newspapers, the industry sees him as Public Enemy #2 (bested only by the Googles and Yahoos of the world).

Unfortunately (but not atypically) the Newspaper Co’s are now responding (late) to this well-established threat (via, free online classified listings in certain categories, etc.), lacking the foresight to preempt the emerging wave of disruption that is clearly before them.

What is this Disruption, you ask?

“You’re soaking in it.”

Blogs. Well, not so much blogs, but cheap and easy blog’esq content publishing systems, and most importantly, Feeds (RSS, Atom, et al).

No, I’m not talking about grassroots journalism (another amazing trend reshaping the newspaper business).

Rather, I’m talking about repurposing ‘blog infrastructure’ as a mechanism for creating and publishing classified listings.

Imagine Blogger or TypePad not in the hands of a blogger, PR flak or journalist… but in the hands of a recruiter, real estate agent or used car salesmen.

Imagine a slightly customized UI that asks for a Job Title, Description and Location, instead of a blog post Title, Link and Body.

Imagine an open database of these listings that you can search… and the ability to subscribe to a Feed containing continuously updated search results.

You don’t have to imagine.

The database already exists (at least for recruitment classifieds) at and… and the UI for publishing will follow soon. More listing categories will emerge in 2005.

The implications are profound.

Rather than paying hundreds of dollars to list a job (house, car, etc) at Monster, CareerBuilder or HotJobs, employers (i.e., companies, recruiters, etc) can simply publish their openings (for free) as Feeds and immediately make them available to a worldwide audience, who can conveniently subscribe to them directly (or via the aforementioned searchable aggregated database).

The value of an employment marketplace such as Monster (aggregating a large audience and a large number of listings) is matched, if not exceeded, by this simple combination of file formats and technologies.

It’s not hard to imagine the impact on newspaper readership or revenues.

Posted in Uncategorized
3 comments on “This Disruption Will Be Syndicated
  1. Tony

    I’m on the other side of this notion of jobs. Not the recruiter, the recruited.

    To that end, I’m getting into the mindset for Living the Long Tail. Putting myself out there, on my blog, in minute detail, so that the people I’ll work with best can find me.

    It’s not a job I’m looking for either. I’m a Long Tail Programmer. Making a component, packaging it, and putting it online, where Google will find the application in which it will fit into place with a happy snap.


    Alan Gutierrez

  2. Anonymous says:

    My question for you is how do such companies sustain themselves?

    For example, how does Indeed or Feedster bring in the revenue required to pay for the bandwidth being consumed?


  3. Tony Gentile says:

    Michael: Ultimately, it all comes back to ‘search economics’… You don’t pay “merely” for inclusion, rather, you pay for incremental add ons and/or position