In the video above, Tom Merritt describes the core of what’s wrong with TWiT. He makes the salient point that advertising has eclipsed content on TWiT — in terms of importance — years ago.
What made TWiT great was:
- Enthusiasm for the subject material (tech).
- Lack of coverage in other outlets since the demise of Tech TV.
- Leo Laporte’s seemingly endearing character.
- Advertising that was minimally invasive and relevant to the audience.
What do we have now?
- Native advertising. Example: The Personal Capital CEO was Leo’s guest on Triangulation and Leo shut off the chat room monitor due to his own
#twitlivesheep revolting against the huge native ad.
- Many other, better tech reporting outlets.
- Completely irrelevant advertisers: Pillpack (might be relevant to the average The Tech Guy caller), Naturebox, Trunk Club, Casper mattresses, Blue Apron, Boll & Branch bed sheets, etc.
- Leo’s complete indifference to his audience. They are only the source of his Podtrac clicks that get him his next Tesla lease.
- Leo doesn’t care about new technology now and only feigns an interest while he watches football games just off-screen during TWiT and The Tech Guy. He hasn’t learned anything new since 1994 and the audience can tell.
While we can’t be 100% sure Tom is discussing TWiT in the video about “places that [he’s] worked,” it is definitely an accurate description of the sad downfall we’ve all witnessed.
RIP TWiT we all knew and loved in the cottage days.
“In content companies is where I’ve seen it, where, you have great content ideas, but the only ones that get traction are the ones that the people who are selling the product think are good, because they can sell them, and your content suffers as a result. It’s not very cohesive.”
— Tom Merritt
This Tom clip came to us as a tip from a reader. The tipper remains anonymous, but he or she is very appreciated.