Owned media lost out due to over reliance on the article template
What is the difference between reading news on your website versus on Apple News or Medium?
For the same article, broadly the reading experience across all publishers and aggregators (like Google News) and social media platform is similar. With this, individual publishers have lost their power to create Owned Identity and Competitive Differentiation for themselves.
Candid Communication lost out. Over the last two decades, the only way to monetize your Owned Media got intertwined with the Digital Advertisements economy and the page-views metric. This meant there was no valuation (financial or otherwise) of the inherent intellectual information in the piece, because the ecosystem couldn’t measure it — in effect, a well-reported piece of journalism or research competed with a funny cat video!
We now serve platforms, not users. Publishers started optimizing their platforms for SEO, not user experience. For example, a website optimized for SEO will publish 50 stories across 100 days for an evolving topic instead of building an one upgrading explainer that provides a coherent narrative.