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Video: Tronc Tries To Explain Tronc To Its Employees

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Jun 20, 2016 4:26PM

"This is the future of journalism. This is the future of content. It doesn't get much better than that. If you care about media and technology, this is the place to be."

And so opens a video from the Human Resources department of tronc, the media company formerly known as Tribune Publishing. The video is filled with so much jargon and doublespeak we're still unclear on what, exactly, tronc will do. According to the video, tronc will "harness the power of our local journalism, feed it into a funnel, and then optimize it so we reach the biggest global audience possible." But what is that? Sounds more like a meat grinder than a media company.

One thing is clear, at least: By 2017, tronc plans to have half of its articles saddled with Brightcove video players, up from today's 16 percent. Why? Because "The CPM [the cost per audience impression] we can earn with video or visualized content is significantly higher than a page without it." Of course, they don't take into account how many people will never open those videos to monetize the content because they're tired of waiting for the page to load.

Other delightful tidbits from the video include the promise that integrating artificial intelligence into journalism will help automate reporting—though since we've seen scant signs of actual intelligence driving tronc's endeavors so far, this claim is suspect.

Oddly, the video says nothing about tronc's plans to, you know, support actual journalism, unless you count this closing statement: "The role of tronc is to transform journalism; from pixels to Pulitzers." We guess if you automate your system, incorporate artificial intelligence, and increase your cost-per-impression through video views, the reporting takes care of itself, right?

Watch the whole depressing video below, and tell us if you can make any sense of it in the comments.