Is Your Media CMS a Crummy Management System?

  • 29-Apr-2014

Though we've seen some improvement in recent years, the sad fact remains that most digital editors don't like their web content & experience management (WCM) systems. In Media & Entertainment companies we find this dissatisfaction particularly acute, perhaps because when content is your job, your CMS better work just right for you.

Media is different

"Work just right" can get tricky. In advising several major media firms selecting new WCM technologies, we've elaborated a series of media-specific requirements which -- while not always exclusive to news organizations -- become major deal-breakers for any significant media CMS. One of these requirements is around flexing for intense traffic spikes. Even wannabe media platforms like Drupal don't always have a good answer here.

NFL.com fumbles

So it should come as little surprise that the NFL.com CMS -- which also powers 32 pro team sites -- started crashing when the 2014 U.S. National Football League season schedule got announced last week. It's possible that the main effects were felt more on the authoring side rather than the public-facing site, but that's no solace to authors, editors, and producers. One columnist at Packers.com saw fit to issue a public rebuke, calling the platform a Crummy Management System, and apologizing to fans.

Diagnosing the real problem

Of course there are manifold reasons why any CMS platform can go bad. Since first publishing this blog, I've learned that while the main NFL.com site runs on Alfresco, the team sites run on an old Autonomy Teamsite implementation (my condolences).  In any case, perhaps this situation really reflects an implementation issue.

In any case, if you're suffering from a crummy management system, let us know how our analysis can help. The tools and know-how exist out there in the world to do CMS right, if your organization is truly committed.

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