Tag Archives: germany

Germany: Leistungsschutzrecht, or how to make sure you’ll never need to change anything about your business, ever.

You’re a newspaper publisher who’s been around for a century or two. Well, not you personally (hopefully), but your publishing house. You’ve been living a sheltered life, mostly; declining ad revenue was easily shouldered by downsizing your regular staff and crushing freelancers with outrageously low fees for their time, effort, and work.

The reason for said dwindling revenues is this new kid on the block, The Wobble. It has been around for a couple of decades, but you never took it seriously, ignored it as best as you could. But your audience (the readers) and your customers (the businesses paying for ad space) liked the new guy; The Wobble became more and more popular. Deep in your heart you knew, already back in the late 90s, that its capricious nature might prove more resilient than you’d like. But what the hells, let’s ignore it some more.

Ten years later you concede one of these new-fangled thingies, a Web Site, might be in order. Yeah. And let’s put these articles online! That’s the thing to do, nowadays. Apparently. So businesses continue buying your print ad space, as well as online ads! To make your brand more popular amongst them weirdo dudes who are on “Social Media”, you’ll also add some buttons and stuff and include loads of metainformation for them “Search Engines”. Whatever they are.

At the same time, refrain from investing in the people who actually write and research the content you distribute. These Reuters and DPA and SDA online feeds are handy; after all, The Wobble and its friends won’t want to read real articles. Rehashes of news should suffice to rekindle the urge to subscribe to your paper-version paper, and thus ensure more revenue from advertisements.

Also, ignore the opportunities your new potential friend The Wobble wants to share with you. Reduce your perception to two of its warts: Facebook and Google. Then first sue Google for sharing headlines you made freely accessible on your web site, pretty much asking for it through SEO marketing. Your bank account doesn’t explode yet? Well, step two is to lobby with your government. Ask your governmental warden to tell The Wobble’s wart to pay for re-sharing content’s headlines (not full articles) you originally shared yourself.

Instant success! Also make sure to publish it in your on- and offline papers as a grand success for all reporters, journalists, photographers, and editors. You know, the guys and gals you pay less and less, and kick out of secure jobs more and more often. The people who would provide you with premium content you could make a living from if you both let them, and started talking with The Wobble rather than seeing it as a parasite.

But hey, what’s to worry about? Why make friends with the guy who’s been living nextdoor for thirty years? There’s always the warden to fall back on. So you won’t have to adapt or develop. Ever.

Eidgenossen: please stop bashing Ze Germans.

Bitching about your neighbours hardly ever is a wise move. Being passive-aggressive about said bitching doesn’t make things better just because you appear to be “polite”. It makes things worse as you’re spewing memes like mad, infecting others and creating problems that simply aren’t there. This is especially true in questions of nationality.

Calling Germans living in Switzerland Schiis-Schwoobe (Shithead Swabians) and blaming then for hogging job opportunities is stupid enough to begin with. Without them shitheads, half our health care would break down. And hey, at least some of them Schwoobe are flexible enough to relocate 1 000 miles to start with a new company. Whereas you guys moan if it takes you an hour to get to work, but refuse to move 50 km closer. Well done!

Cheering when the German team loses a match – what for? Did Schweini bugger your vuvuzela or something?

My personal gripe in this nationalist pseudo-discussion, though: First complaining about how Germans arrogantly dismiss the Swiss language just to get angry at immigrants at least trying to learn local dialects. This is not a sign of a sane society. And the media cater for such an audience, too, kindling the fires underneath an issue that mostly exists in your head.

A wise man once said: “The Swiss are polite. They are not friendly.” I am inclined to agree.

We all live on the same ball of dirt called Earth. And don’t forget good ole Newton: Actio et reactio doesn’t only apply in physics, but in human relations, too. So don’t complain if the bitchee bitches at the bitcher, i.e. you.