Nothing is King

Take a social media property or other noun. Add the words "is King" at the end. You might put something before, it, but make sure the words "is King" are in there. Context is King. Twitter/Pinterest is King. Content is King. The Customer is King.

(Just Google them in quotes, you'll see thousands of examples).

This is a heartfelt plea for people to stop pointlessly crowning things.

I know that people will tell you that Bill Gates said it, which makes it OK. But he didn't. He never said the word "king". It was a headline. And it has been, lazily so, ever since.

These headlines (see also: “wins” or “wins at” - as in 'Oreo wins the superbowl' - again, Google it) end the argument before it's even had a chance to brew. They are the exact opposite of thoughtful opinion pieces (because these are not news, though they pretend to be).

I understand why such headlines are appealing. In a world where you've got second for someone to click your link before they head down the Buzzfeed Wormhole - then maybe you feel you have to shout THIS WINS, CLICK ME!

This sort of thinking and way of presenting news is destructive. Right now, the reality is that nothing is King. Maybe Facebook is winning at one thing. Maybe Google at another. Content is an abstract concept that would be best broken down into 'entertainment' or 'stuff you might like'. At one time, TV was some sort of King. Some would say it still is. Press ads might have been a King. Journalism could be a King (oh yeah: content is journalism, or photos).

Let's try replacing the word 'King' with 'Important', because that's what we're saying. “King” says "this is all that matters". But that's never true.

Thing is, once you crown something, you can pretend to have won the argument by shouting loudest and declaring the contest over. Some of the things aren't even in the same species - how can Pinterest and also content be king?

No: Pinterest and Content are ‘important’. And then you can find a more exciting headline and the reader can think about what else might matter too.

It all smacks slightly of a playground: I win, no returns, Context is King. Nyah Nyah.

When really, it just shows you've misunderstood the race.