Afterword

ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Most media houses in #Bhutan are not participating in the big party

Many media houses in Bhutan have set up their own websites: BBS, Kuensel, Bhutan Today, Bhutan Observer, Business Bhutan, and The Bhutanese all run news websites (the last two, by the way, having the most user-friendly interfaces).

Obviously, media outlets want as much traffic as possible to their websites. This can be seen by the "visit our website" promotions in the local print and broadcast media. However, currently the private newspaper websites - as well as BBS - are missing out on millions of potential readers outside of Bhutan. Why? Two words: Google News. Launched exactly ten years ago, Google News aggregates news articles from more than 50,000 online sources, and automatically compiles a 'front page' every few minutes. Google News has become the de-facto news destination for millions of users around the world. Users visit Google News to check out the recent happenings around the world, then click on news articles which takes them to the source (the website of the media house that published the article).

Some staggering statistics: About 1,000,000,000 (one billion!) unique users visit Google News every week. And each month, indexed news websites receive more than 4 billion visits that originate from Google News, as well as from the automatic news links generated by Google Search.

Bhutan's private newspapers are currently not participating in this party. When you search for Bhutan on Google News, the only Bhutanese news source that currently comes up is Kuensel. The other websites - Business Bhutan, Bhutan Observer, BBS, etc. - are not showing any results. Why? They are not indexed by Google News.

The solution is quite simple. If you are the publisher or editor of a media house in Bhutan, read Getting into Google News, then fill the form. and expect a surge in international traffic. More information for publishers is available here.