Scott White was the Editor-in-Chief of Canadian Press for the last 15 years. On March 25 he joined Postmedia (the parent company of the National Post, Ottawa Citizen, canada.com and dailies across the country) as the Vice President of Content Strategy and Business Development.
The only problem with this is that White doesn’t seem to know much about either “content strategy” or business. In a recent interview with Marketing magazine, White says
“I went and did my MBA at Rotman and finished that up last fall.”
It’s great that recent grads are getting such plum placements in media organizations. I was under the impression it was still an incredibly tough profession to break into, with so few openings that people are willing to work for free.
How much experience does White have in advertising if he spent the last 35 years as a journalist and only graduated from business school last fall? Not much. But that’s okay! He did some reading up on what he’d be doing as vice president of a national media conglomerate.
I’m still getting up to speed on the issue of native advertising, but I did a fair amount of research on it before getting into the job.
Again, this can only be good news for the rest of us, right? If someone so obviously unqualified is being hired for such a high-value position, then the journalism industry must be flooded with jobs right now.
There’s a lot of logic to hiring a news person to head up native advertising, since it’s supposed to look like regular news content. If you’ve ever accidentally clicked on one such link without seeing the “-SPONSORED-” above the headline, it probably looked like a weirdly peppy story or slideshow that just so happened to think only one brand could solve all your summer skin problems. It’s supposed to blend in with regular content as much as possible for just that reason.
But hiring a longtime editor who has almost no experience in advertising? Someone whose only experience with the specific thing he was hired to do is that he did “a fair amount of research” on it? For a company as bad at business as Postmedia is, that’s a risky choice.
[Marketing] [image via Neil/Flickr]