It’s Friday afternoon. Day Five. We’re supposed to deliver something working at the end of Day Sixty. (Working days. And we’re closed for August.) Fifty-five days to go.
Things to report so far:
1. Ben has been worrying about the logo, identity and ‘feel’. We’re not sure that Newspaper Club encapsulates exactly what we’re going to be making any more. We’ve told him to relax. We don’t even know what we’re making yet, so there’s no point deciding all that. So the logo he’s doing now, and Newspaper Club as a name are subject to change. And we’ve decided not to decide about ‘tone’. If we try and make the site feel different to ‘us’ then it’s going to be too much work. We’ll just make those decisions as we go along.
2. We had an excellent brainstormery session at the RSA on Tuesday. Many kind people came and helped us out. Things were decided:
a/ We shouldn’t start with the tagging a blog post thing. It seems like it’d be too hard to parse the real content from all the web cruft. (Look ‘parse’ and ‘cruft’ – I’m talking like a developer. There was also much talk of rabbit-holes.) So for the first version of the thing it’s going to have boxes in which you post your text, headlines, author details etc. Which means people can take their content from anywhere, it doesn’t have to be online already. This opens all sorts of possibilities. Which we won’t think about now. We’re just going to try and get something that works done as soon as possible.
b/ We need to talk to some printers pretty quickly. A lot of the things we might do depend on what our minimum batch size is, and what the unit cost will be. We won’t know that until we’ve kissed a few printer frogs.
c/ Legal. This needs a lot of thinking about. But we’re not going to worry about it until we’ve got something that works.
d/ Logistics. No-one knows what 1,000 papers looks like. How big, physically is it. We’ll need to help people visualise how much actual bulk is going to turn up at their house or wherever.
e/ And lots of other stuff. We have notes that are too long for here.
3. We’ve realised we’re going to need demo newspapers. For lots of reasons. Partly just to test the system, partly to have stuff to show people when we’re explaining the idea, partly to help express the range of things you can do with the product. We don’t want to be pigeon-holed as a parish newsletter provider. So we need to show how this could be used for art, music, travel, food etc. We call this the Paninaro strategy.