If you are a keen reader and active commentator of popular socio-political websites like The Online Citizen, States Times Review or the now-defunct The Real Singapore, you can set up one yourself for less than $50 a year.
The purpose of this post is to encourage STR readers to take an active interest in writing Singapore news and commentaries.
1) Think of a good name
Oh remove “The” e.g. The Straits Times. Don’t ask me why but it is just bad marketing.
2) Create your domain address
You can choose from a buffet of web hosts but I recommend BlueHost.com. Simply pick a domain name e.g. statestimesreview.com and for beginners, use WordPress structure as they are filled with free templates. Those who have got free time can customize and experiment their site on their own, otherwise the entire process to getting an established site should take you less than 15 minutes.
3) Content creating
This is where your creativity and inspiration take form with content creation. Personally, some of my content creation techniques are:
-News Reproduction, where I recycle news information from various news sites of the same report to combine them into one report. This is especially useful for those who are good at interpreting an article from different angles.
-Comments Featuring. Just go to Facebook or forums and take a screengrab and build on the comments.
-Opinions and Commentaries. Write down your prejudices and analysis of a certain topic, its pretty tiring to do it yourself though, if you are looking at quantity, you would need a steady stream of contributors or blogs to follow.
-Exposes. You will have to be actively online to cover these news within half an hour. However, beware of inaccuracies as news of an ongoing are constantly updated and sources may be incorrect.
-Statistics. Draw your own conclusions from the numbers and figures.
4) Share your content everywhere
Video. Comics. Articles. Whatever. Share them on forums and interact with your commentators. Your commentators help make you a better content creator.
5) Get Google Adsense
Monetize your site to be a little bit more motivated each time your write, but remember it is your content that what makes people click on your site.
Remember: Quality over Quantity. Patience pays, take your time and produce quality work. Churning out articles without making an effort will turn readers away. Emphasize on originality and content creation. Singapore is still short of writers, we need more writers to raise awareness for Singaporeans.
The Singapore Press Holdings has a wide range of mainstream media news makers, yet the number of online alternative news sites is only a handful. It is time to increase the number of socio-political news sites to provide a true alternative to the mainstream media.