by Giulio Montanaro

A few days ago, while reading other contributions on the pages of the blog, I found one piece in particular that caught my attention: I'm referring to thearticle on the situation of conservative media.

The conclusions gleaned from Mr. Fall's research have been the subject of several domestic discussions, all of which ended with the same consideration: to preserve traditional Italian values, we must learn to converse in non-traditional ways with Italians.

A new vision of the electorate

I start from a basic consideration: we can no longer look at Italians as potential voters strictu sensu. The idea of the electorate is no longer the same. We have to start looking at voters as pure consumers. Something that is already very clear to leftist ideologues, as evidenced by the way their media offer is articulated. The approach that characterizes progressive communication, more and more akin to the sales attempts of Berber merchants active in the medinas, means that there is never a shortage of products to offer, give away (apparently) or throw you out of frustration.

On the right, the problem is quite different. As Fall's aforementioned piece testifies, the scenario is close to that of a flat encephalogram: practically everything is missing - product, strategy and business network. But this catastrophism, when placed in a more general phenomenon, can become catharsis and rebirth. The growing distrust of mainstream media is a phenomenon that the ridiculous narratives about COVID have further fueled.

Good news: the crisis of the mainstream is deepening

The reality that emerges, analyzing recent studies by Pew Research, Reuters and Princeton University, is that America (and in particular American conservatives) are going through a sort of epiphany in terms of media awareness. In fact, 80% of Republicans have recently declared that they get their information through independent media and only 29% of Americans have declared that they trust the news (in Italy 40%, source: Reuters). Another important consideration, again looking at America, is that locals have found that their level of trust in the news is inversely proportional to the time they spend listening to it.

We were talking about the distrust of right-wing Americans. A distrust that, unlike Italy, finds consolation and alternative to globalist narratives on so many newspapers, sites, TV, podcasts and video podcasts.

America and Italy: an abyss in the middle

In fact, if we make a comparison between the Italian conservative media and the American conservative media, in terms of print or digital media, the result is merciless. But if we try to do it on the real media of the future for the Right, the podcast, the comparison does not even exist. And the problem is that not even a potential comparison with other nations of the old continent would help us. And yet, the number one podcast in the world, "The Joe Rogan Experience", is blatantly anti-neoliberal. A Joe Rogan who has now become, stealing Matt Taibbi's words, the veritable Mephistopheles of the mainstream media.

The Joe Rogan case

A phenomenon capable of catalyzing so much of that discontent and mistrust in the mainstream media that the aforementioned researches speak of, to the point of allowing it to reach an audience larger than that of CNN, MSNBC and FOX put together (emphasis needed), as Saagar Enjeti of "Breaking Points" testifies during his speech at Lex Fridman's podcast.

In fact, it is not surprising to note the constant progress, in terms of audience, of figures such as rock star psychologist Jordan Peterson, journalist and columnist Ben Shapiro, the histrionic non-aligned reporter Alex Jones of Info Wars", the new “Breaking Points” by Krystal & Sagaar or, last but not least, the hilarious and equally intelligent podcast by the rising star of American anti-establishment comedy, Tim Dillon. A Tim Dillon as desecrating as he is performing, economically speaking, you might say. Please note the average monthly income generated by the Omaha-based comedian through donations via "Patreon": as the linked piece says "he's making millions".

Peterson, Rogan, Dillon, "Breaking Points": vivid testimonies that dissent and intellect can still proliferate, even if they have to understand and accept that they have to channel themselves on a communication track very different from the traditional one. "Podcast or Videopodcast format, on decentralized networks, not regulated by algorithms, nor subject to any influence exerted by Silicon Valley and paid for in Bitcoin", Adam Curry's genius would comment to enrich the idea. This is indeed the quickest synthesis for a successful recipe when it comes to communicate, inform and proselytize without fearing anything in terms of censorship or deplatforming.

Adam Curry's lesson

When he pioneered a new frontier in new media in 2005, Curry was looking for a space where he could really report, saying whatever he wanted, without having to worry about imposed editorial lines, private interests, political correctness et cetera. As he said days ago commenting on "Spotify's" new podcast hub project in Los Angeles, "these kinds of initiatives are exactly the antithesis of the reason I created the podcast in 2005." His "No Agenda Show" podcast, produced in collaboration with columnist John C. Dvorak, is the ultimate in deconstructing mainstream media narratives as well as a source for some of the most interesting news that doesn't find its way there.

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It has a form that is very similar to the idea of curatorial and participatory journalism that the future of independent journalism seems to be heading towards, where news of every kind and type is gathered by the two authors together with the reports of the listeners and then deconstructed by the authors during the show. It's a form of shared podcast, where listeners can step into the producer's shoes through news reports, comments, corrections and donations, actively taking part in the editorial line of the podcast. Which also clearly offers more motivational boost on the donation front that the podcast feeds off of.

Curry is in fact also the creator of the streaming payment system "Value 4 Value", where listeners can make micropayments in Bitcoin while listening and for the duration of their listening, so as to guide the production of content by podcasters, as well as clearly recognize the fair value of their work.

For more references on Curry's reliability, I recommend watching or listening to his latest appearances on the "Joe Rogan Experience Show" and the "Megyn Kelly Show", both very recent.

Returning to the ethical nature of the Podcast, it is increasingly difficult to disagree with Curry. As of today, the Podcast is the only tool to obviate the corporative tyranny we experience whenever we flip through most newspapers or watch a news program.

Why and how to bet on the podcast

In Italy, by virtue of the ever-increasing media segregation of conservative content, there is no more fertile ground to work in than this. Conservative issues need a push fueled by podcasts as well as a younger, more diverse view of conservative information. Podcasts and video podcasts are simply essential these days, they are the only channels where we can still discuss without running afoul of censorship and political correctness.

A reconsideration of topics is also necessary. Young people have lost interest in politics and it won't be politics that brings them back. Joe Rogan offers food for thought on this front as well. The curious approach, often skeptical, almost investigative at times, that distinguishes most of Rogan's contradictors, added to the discussion of political topics with non-political interlocutors, profoundly changes the perception of the value of the topics he deals with as well as offering him a much wider catchment area, given that listeners tend to select his podcasts according to the guests.

Having finished incensing Joe Rogan, I close with a general consideration. The prevailing technology that dominates the lives of young people and the communication that takes place through it is leftist and, as such, will be increasingly aimed at censorship and mystification, as well as individualization. "Technology will increasingly push for individualization, social media will increasingly create gated communities," Zygmunt Bauman warned. Closed communities in which everything will be done so that conservative instances will be literally cancelled.

Between what we've seen above, the upcoming launch of Trumpian "Truth," and the moderate success that "Gettr" and "ThinkSpot" are having, there's no shortage of good news: we can expect an increasing availability of conservative content.

Italy, and Italian conservatives, can no longer stand by and watch. It is time for action.

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Nato a Padova nel 1980, appassionato di lingue, storia e filosofia. Scrive fin da giovanissimo e dal ‘99 collabora con organi di stampa. Ha lavorato nel settore della musica elettronica, distinguendosi come talent scout e agente di alcuni degli artisti più importanti degli ultimi 15 anni. Ha fatto esperienze nella moda e nel tessile e vissuto in nove città differenti. Attualmente vive in Tunisia.