For example, venture capitalists don’t like funding companies that have reporters on staff. In the early days of BuzzFeed, I had several VCs say they were interested in investing if we could figure out a way to fire all the editors and still run the site. I’m not joking.Tech investors prefer pure platform companies because you can just focus on the tech, have the users produce the content for free, and scale the business globally without having to hire many people. Startups that promise this vision have an easier time attracting funding which is why there are so many startups trying to be the next Twitter or Facebook or the Instagram or Pinterest for X, Y, or Z. Meanwhile, companies that employ reporters, editors, and creative people usually struggle to get funding which is why so few publishing companies or agencies are venture backed.
I used to hear this about Know Your Meme. Traditional tech investors just don’t speak Content. I’d even say that the label “Content” is part of the problem: it’s just “the stuff that users make.”
Lately I’ve been thinking their fear of content sites is pretty comical, given how cheap journalists are compared to developers.