A newly launched content agency in the US has been mocked online for releasing a promo video that is stuffed to the max with buzzwords.
Within the video, the agency Tronc says the future of journalism will see a lot videos and content optimisation. However, it’s the way the video is portrayed that has tech website ReCode suggesting the video looks like a parody to cable network Adult Swim. The video includes a suite of buzzwords such as “content optimisation”, “artificial intelligence” and “content funnels”.
Tronc is made up of the rebranded US newspaper publisher Tribune which, according to The Verge, has brought out some of the best journalism in the past few years. Tribune published titles such as the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune.
US publication Vox described the video as having “painfully scripted delivery” with a lack of excitement on the founders faces when describing the exciting new future.
And another site CNet posed a satirical challenge to its readers.
“I want you to spend 30 minutes of your day composing an employee motivation video that includes the maximum number of nightmare scenarios and buzzwordy cliches.
“Then I want you to present it to your bosses.
“If any of them bite, we here at Technically Incorrect want to see if it beats the quite body-shivering, bloviatory effort of Tronc.”
New York Magazine also translated the video for those who were a bit confused by its meaning.
This is the future of journalism. The future of content. If you care about media and technology this is the place to be.
Translation: Tronc is cool and cutting-edge.
tronc stands for Tribune online content, and it also means pooling of resources.
Translation: Tronc is more than just an ill-advised rebranding — it’s also an ill-advised reorganization.
It’s about meeting in the middle having a tech startup culture meet a legacy corporate culture and then evolving and changing and that’s really the fun part.
Translation: Lots of people are going to get laid off, but your office might get a a few bean-bag chairs.
Social media hasn’t been very forgiving either, with one describing it as a hostage-style video, another as new media gone bad and Wall Street Journal writer Christopher Mims saying “Tronc is one of those corporate initiatives that sounds like a startup no sane VC would ever fund”.
this SNL skit perfectly captures the nightmare of new media gone bad https://t.co/g822m4JeC6
— Chris Ziegler (@zpower) June 20, 2016
Tronc is one of those corporate initiatives that sounds like a startup no sane VC would ever fund https://t.co/WCmTU27QQK
— Christopher Mims (@mims) June 21, 2016
I can’t believe this is real. https://t.co/Hz1YvhaIRj
— Farhad Manjoo (@fmanjoo) June 20, 2016
Parody or hostage video? Hard to tell. https://t.co/sOje86Cztx
— Evan Sparks (@NewsbytesEvan) June 20, 2016
wait i legit thought the name and video was satire lmaooo https://t.co/DrhvaGEnLC
— Calvin (@aurosan) June 21, 2016
The video was delivered to employees, and while the outside reaction has been rather unfavourable, a Tronc spokesperson, Dennis Culloton told various publications the point of the video was to motivate employees.
“The purpose is to get employees informed and motivated about the philosophy and thinking behind the push to use machine learning and artificial intelligence to help turn around the brand formerly known as Tribune Publishing,” Culloton told ReCode.
“There will be some other pushes for the videos, including employee meetings happening around the country all week.”