First Comes Carriage

In his Akimbo podcast, Seth Godin teaches us how to adopt a posture of possibility, change the culture, and choose to make a difference. Here are my takeaways from the episode.

In this podcast, Seth discusses the importance of having and building carriage for shipping work to our audience. Carriage is the vehicle that can carry content from one place to another. In the digital world, we need to leverage some carriage to deliver/ship our work for making changes happen.

Carol Burnett used her variety show to entertain millions of viewers every week. Carol Burnett owned an hour from 10 million people, and she used that position for years and years to entertain people in a way that she was proud of. She had a carriage which was carrying her work from the studio through the network to people’s homes on Saturday night.

Ted Turner realized that the UHF TV stations and cable channels were creating a different type of carriage. He leveraged the carriage to deliver the contents created by him to those who want to see them. Turner’s Atlanta Braves baseball team became a premiere team in the league because he leveraged his carriage to give his team exposure.

Carriages used to be controlled by a handful of gatekeepers, but the Internet has turned the rules of carriage running toward a different direction. Now everyone can produce contents and deliver those contents via the Internet, the availability of carriage became wide open.

Because the Internet is the friend of infinity, content aggregators such as YouTube and WordPress.com are no longer playing the role of gatekeeper. Another word, remarkable work does not happen because YouTube put something on their home page. Remarkable work becomes that way because many people choose to tell other people about the content they have seen.

With millions of other people now have the same access to the technologies as we do, we have an opportunity to build the carriage for us. With patience, we can build a following. With patience, we can build a permission asset with the ability to deliver anticipated personal and relevant messages to our readers who want to hear from us.

As the carriage rules keep changing, they are no longer controlled by the FCC or by someone like Ted Turner, who owns a network or cable company. For the first time, each one of us can build the carriage for doing the work we are proud of, as opposed to pandering to someone else who owns the carriage to fit into their business model.