Attention isn't trust

A race to the top, or a race to the bottom?

Happy Friday…

First, just want to say if you’ve emailed me and I haven’t replied yet — I am so sorry. I work in digital marketing, and marketing + holiday shopping = crazy town.

I love getting email from you and I’ll catch up soon. Once we hit the deadline for shipping in time for Christmas, it gets saner. Much. When the clients can stop and breathe, so can I. Thanks for your understanding, I really do appreciate it.

Attention isn’t trust…

When everyone is a marketer and anyone can build a platform, it’s really easy to see attention as success. Attention is the beast that click bait and the first person industrial complex were born of.

If the story is raw enough, it’s going to get clicks. Which explains why people write in lurid detail about sex and scandal and hate and horror. Because in the short term, clicks and eyeballs feel a lot like success.

In Man’s Search for Meaning, Viktor Frankl tells the story of how in Auchwitz, the first few times he saw men beaten to death or shot for stumbling, he was in shock. It made him sick. Made him vomit. After a while, he just kept eating his soup. Or working. Didn’t even look. It was commonplace.

The truth is that attention seems like a success metric, but over time, most people choose trust over drama. We all rubber-neck when there’s a train wreck, but when train wrecks happens every day, or every block, you just stop looking after a while. You get numb to it. And then what?

You know?

This is why the trend of shocking headlines concerns me. It’s fascinating, but also a little repulsive. I’m not sure it serves anyone well in a world where we get more of what we click on. I’m not sure if it’s a race to the top—or a race to the bottom. Just thinking out loud. What do you think?

This weeks’s writing

I hope you’ll find something that interests you. Your clicks and reads keep me writing. If there’s something you’d like to see more of, or something specific you’d like more information on, please hit reply and tell me.

On writing…

On marketing & business…

On Medium…

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend.