TIME Magazine Cover: 3 Year Old Sucks Moms Tit To Get Readers; Bristol Palin v JWoww

2014-09-15 02:00:44
TIME Magazine Cover: 3 Year Old Sucks Moms Tit To Get Readers; Bristol Palin v JWoww
Monday, September 15, 2014, 2:00:44 AM

Photobucket TIME Magazine Cover just got new meaning over the last 24 hours. The stirring TIME Cover photo of Jamie Lynne Grumet with her 3-year-old son obviously sucking on her breast, has raised the attention of the nation. Interestingly, TIME did not use the shocking cover in any of its European editions, and this blogger wonders if TIME could have got away with the action over there, or perhaps they would not care so much at all. Whatever the case, it’s obvious Americans care.

The TIME Magazine Cover’s surface intent was to bring attention to an article about Dr. William Sears, or “The Man Who Remade Motherhood.” But the real intent was to drive potential readers to subscribe to TIME and get past its online paywall (or buy the magazine at a store) to read the rest of the story about Dr. Sears.

Will the media ploy work?

I have my doubts, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it will, and I’ll use System Dynamics thinking to explain why. The massive buzz about the photo will lead to an accumulated stock of interested people, let’s say ten million Americans. Out of that, the majority will talk about it by mouth, email, and online comments and tweets, causing a small percentage to actually pay to access the paywall or get the mag on the shelf. But the bet I’m making is the stock of people is enormous and because of the shock value of the photo, and how it has been distributed, and talked about in both old and new media. While the outflow of buyers may be much less, it’s still larger than it would normally be because of the large stock of people.

The Future Of Media: Shocking

Thus, then, is the future of media: shocking. As the number of media content items continues to increase, and as our ability to produce those items rapidly – blogs, audio, video, comments, tweets, etc – continues to improve, we’re flooded with media noise, making it harder for any one message to reach it’s desired number of consumers. TIME has cut through all of that with this strategy.

What this says is we should expect even more of the same, and my prediction is it will take the population about three years to start to get used to the most shocking images, and then another six or so to not see them as shocking at all, thus causing that image to lose it’s ability to draw attention. What could that be is anyone’s guess, but I’m confident the dynamic I present is sound. It’s the same reason we stop to watch Bristol Palin v JWoww: because of the shock value of what JWoww tweeted in response to what Bristol Palin wrote in the negative about President Obama’s decision to support Gay Marriage.

This is what she tweeted:

It’s not hard to see what got everyone’s attention. It helped boosted ‘Bristol Palin’ the keyword to number four on Google Trends for the evening of Thursday, and was the constant source of a number of Twitter words that managed to bounce in and out of Twitter Trends throughout Thursday.

So, again, what’s the future of media: shocking.

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About the Author

Zennie Abraham is the founder of Zennie62Media which consists of http://www.zennie62blog.com and a multimedia blog news aggregator and video network, and 78-blog network, with social media and content development services and consulting. Zennie is a pioneer video blogger, YouTube Partner, social media practitioner, game developer, and pundit. Note: news aggregator content does not reflect the personal views of Mr. Abraham. Visit http://www.youtube.com/user/zennie62 and http://www.tout.com/u/zennie62 - follow on Twitter @zennie62