DRSC Media switches to dark theme, stops using social media and other changes

DRSC Media, 2017

We’ve decided to make some design changes on our website, as well as reduce our usage of social media channels to focus on our content.

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Last month, we talked about how we were looking into alternatives for Google Analytics, and had started trialling an alternative on “huaweinews.eu”. This trial going as expected, we’ve decided to remove Google Analytics from both of our websites entirely and closing our account with them. While this new analytics option is a lot more basic and at times we miss some of the features from Google Analytics, we believe this alternative is better for both us and our visitors.

Moving on to advertisement, we had announced a reduction in advertisement on both websites. Eventually, “huaweinews.eu” went ad-free a week ago, although things are going to change even more in the coming days, making this move slightly pointless. Advertisements will eventually disappear from DRSC Media entirely, but, currently, we do not have a date for this. We’ve decided to delete all advertisements from the welcome page, only leaving them while reading articles or using the search function.

We’ve also decided to make some design changes on both of our websites, switching to a dark theme, mostly due to the white background being too harsh on the eyes of our staff. Initially, we had picked a fully black background/white letters design, before realizing this was still too harsh on the eyes of readers. Here’s a screenshot of the original design:

We’ve now adjusted the dark background, using a lighter shade of black, making the white text less harsh on the eyes. We are still in the process of tweaking this design, so don’t be surprised if the background becomes clearer and the letters slightly darker in the future. Here’s the current design:

Concerning our secondary website, Huawei News, we decided to launch this one to try and better organize our Huawei content, as well as see whether the brand would be interested in working with us on this section. Our reasoning was, and still is, that we publish a lot of content that definitely falls in the “questionable” category, which would make it harder to work with brands. Yes, we are actually aware of this, although we still believe in our ideas and in what we write. We at DRSC Media refuse to put aside our ideals in the name of money or to increase our chances of a sponsorship, and will continue pointing out what we believe is negative. Sadly, we are still waiting for an answer to our initial e-mail to Huawei. We’ve also attempted entering in contact with the company through other means, but all has failed, or we’ve been given the standard answer of “we’ll talk to the marketing service”.

Handling two websites and posting the same content on both is extremely time consuming and difficult. Thus, we’ve decided to delete “huaweinews.eu” and just leave all our content on this website [DRSC Media], together with all the rest of our articles, regardless of whether this diminishes or increases our chances of getting a sponsorship. This change will be made in the coming days, at random, although little to no users should be affected, as most readers still go through “drscmedia.eu” to read our Huawei articles or view our guides/reviews. According to our estimates, this will affect roughly 5% of our overall daily traffic, which is, as mentioned, negligible.

Finally, concerning social media, we’ve decided to stop sharing our articles on Twitter and Facebook, seeing it is essentially a waste of time. While we are aware there are automated ways to share newly posted articles, we prefer having full control of the process, due to the diversity of our content (free and premium articles, different accounts for different type of content, etc). This decision mostly comes from the fact that the time it takes us to share an article on social media is not worth the return, especially if we look at the number of followers we’ve managed to gather over the past two years. Our Facebook page is standing at 14 likes and 16 followers, while on Twitter, DRSC Media has 9 followers, “EU Propaganda” counts 5 and Huawei News stands at 96. Of course, keep in mind that on Twitter, our accounts follow each other, dropping these numbers to 5, 1 and 92 followers respectively. While followers are not the most important thing in the world, other news sites that do the exact same content than us, but in worse, and that started later than us, are standing at over 1 to 2K followers. Followers remain important to share your content as well as, of course, increase visibility of your brand. It is also easier to establish a commercial or professional relationship with other companies if one has 1K followers instead of 10, and more people will see your articles in the first case than in the second one. While the few people following us appear to be very supportive of our content and frequently interact with us, we must apologize to them for this let down and change of course. But, as mentioned, it makes more sense for us to stop wasting time with Facebook and Twitter and focus on our content, rather than continue slowly building a community, especially at this speed.

For those still wanting to keep track of our content, we’ve put in place a specific section on our website, which we call “DRSC News Feed”, which will list new articles or existing premium articles going free-to-read. We refuse to put in place a newsletter, due to the CO2 impact of e-mails, with various estimates claiming a regular e-mail emits between 4 to 10 grams of CO2. Of course, these numbers vary year after year, as technology becomes greener and more efficient, but also vary depending on whether the datacentres use the latest technologies or run old servers. We also recommend favouriting our website directly, instead of performing a search each time, or favouriting this “feed” directly.

As we’ve already mentioned, we intend to keep DRSC Media up for 10 years. It’s been two years the website exists, meaning that, for now, we expect to keep it online for 8 more years. Of course, this doesn’t mean we intend to keep going for this long. We’ve been quite honest about this issue, with DRSC Media losing money on a daily-basis and failing to attract as many readers as we expected. For the foreseeable future, we expect to continue publishing articles on a regular basis, but it wouldn’t be surprising if we suddenly stop from one day to another, with staff members eventually quitting or moving on with their lives.

For DRSC Pro subscribers: we are unable to continue providing this service, and thus have decided to stop accepting new subscribers. Existing subscribers can continue enjoying their subscription until DRSC Publishers officially announces the suspension of DRSC Media’s activities. The company will then refund whatever is left on the subscription in the following way:

  • DRSC Pro subscriptions are worth 999€ per year of 365 days.
  • If DRSC Media stops, say, with 100 days left on the subscription, we will refund 999/365=2.7370*100=274€.
  • As an apology and token of our appreciation for your support, we will add 10% on that number, being 274*0.1=28, resulting in 28+274=302€ refunded. We believe this is generous enough.

We are also considering some changes on specific content, such as articles detailing ideas. Ideas take a long time to develop and might further evolve with time. Thus, having to rewrite a new article detailing these new changes or improvements for a specific idea are time costly and not interesting. We will experiment by adding a mention along the lines of “This article is subject to change”, eventually keeping track of all the changes or additions to these articles.

This is all for now. As per usual, thank you for your continued support,

DRSC Media

A division of DRSC Publishers Ltd.