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The Virtues of Self-Employment


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Power Line

John Hinderaker

 April 25, 2023

Huge news these days in the media world, with Tucker Carlson, the most popular figure in the history of cable news, I believe, out at Fox, and Don Lemon–a marginal personality whom I have never seen in action–fired by CNN. But that is not all: Disney has also fired Nate Silver from the 538 franchise that Silver founded years ago.

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This has to do, evidently, with layoffs at the money-bleeding Disney Corporation, whose wokeness hasn’t helped at the box office. And 538 may have contributed to Disney’s losses:

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My point is that people in the media world either have value, or they don’t. The big organizations, whether conglomerates like Disney/ABC, TV networks like Fox News or CNN, or newspapers like the New York Times, have nothing like the power that they once did. They exist because people like to read, or hear from, a finite number of reporters and commentators. Like Tucker Carlson and Nate Silver. And if the conglomerates lose those people, they have little to offer.

The news organization adds surprisingly little value, because people can access the information they want in many ways. Thus, Megyn Kelly has gone from a broadcast career to a sensationally popular podcast where she reaches millions of listeners. In her own way, without corporate interference. Bari Weiss is far better known and more influential now, as a podcaster and writer on Substack, than she ever was as a reporter for the New York Times. Chris Rufo has no corporate affiliation that I know of, but he reaches millions through Twitter and other outlets. There are many more examples: Joe Rogan influences vastly more people than, say, Paul Krugman, and perhaps more than whoever might currently be hosting the CBS, NBC or ABC nightly news. I couldn’t name one of those “mainstream” anchors if you offered me a million dollars apiece.

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*It is because most people no longer rely on establishment media institutions for their information. They look to people they trust, on Twitter, on Substack, on the “Free Internet,” and so on. The free media are the future. That, I think, is where Tucker Carlson and others are headed. Corporate sponsorship is more or less irrelevant.

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* We Have A Winner!

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