Issue 1 ran from 16 November 2011 to 21 December 2011.

Here’s What We Got

As we end the year—and our first issue—we offer a final meditation on the information we inherit, along with this, our first set of topical annotations. Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you in 2012.

No one really owns a recipe. They get shared and disseminated through a love all humans share, of good food. Substitutions get made, volumes altered and flavors tweaked as the cook makes and remakes a dish.

Content wants to be messy. It wants to roll around in the mud. It wants to be gross. Our job is to pull it together—to take the guesswork out of creating and curating it—and to treat content work as something closer to a science.

We also have to make sure the stories for a particular feature knit together with stories from all the other features and apps on Facebook. Does this story make sense next to others in the news feed? Does it “feel” like Facebook when you get this story? These are all content strategy questions about framing and dealing with user-generated content.

With a constant deluge of new content channels, technologies, and demands, content crises are a fact of life in many organizations. These day-to-day crises aren’t just isolated events—they’re symptoms of a far bigger change: content is now a business asset, and that is rocking the foundations of the business world.

And just as our tent is expanding, so too are our ideas about what we do. A complete description of our work would begin to define what it is that makes this our tent: What brought us all here? What are we hoping to achieve? Of all the assumptions and ideas we’ve dragged in with us, which are the babies and which the bathwater?

It’s time to recognize that many of us in nominally separate fields and industries are working on the same problem from slightly different angles.

A Bit More About This Issue

Our inaugural issue will run through mid-December of 2011, with a new article coming out on most Wednesdays. The week of the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday, we’ll publish on a Tuesday.

You can expect a new issue every six to eight weeks, with a little slack for holidays and breaks, each with a different editorial theme. At the end of each issue, we’ll publish an index that links to thematically related material elsewhere, and collects the conversation so far—including a selection of your comments.

This issue was illustrated by our very own creative director, Ethan Marcotte. Please send comments, bug reports, and candy to staff@contentsmagazine.com.