For those of you posting embarassing pics of yourself on the Net, not thinking about the eternal life they will have and who will ultimately see them (maybe even your kids 20 years later), there's good news, according to (of all places) The Economist. The Media Revolution going on right now is all about small, not large, audiences from this point forward. The Economist is a good old-fashioned magazine, worthy of slower digestion instead of instant disposal after a read. Often, it can be dull and hard to understand in this high-speed, gotta-know-now world. It's not pop culture; it's actually thoughtful or, at least, thought-inspiring. It's dense and perfect for those who like tearing out articles for future reference. It's one of those media choices out there in medialand attracting a very specific reader, offering a unique point of view of the world. In it's own way, it is a bellweather of the direction all media is going.
In the April 20th issue, The Economist covered the subject of Media in a series of articles (here, here, here and here...plus several others worthy of reading). I encourage you to read through the articles because they weigh in heavily on a Big Trend watching Media's evolution.
The Economist writes about the transformational powers of high-speed broadband, saying its advent represents a true revolution in the way the people of our planet communicate? When The Economist makes that observation, it confirms we are all living in it. In one article, the author points out that unlike previous eras in the history of communication, in which power resided with owners of the machinery, the Web era is quickly becoming all about its participants.
That IS the New Entertainment Economy. Media control is no longer only in the hands of the license and transmitter holders. Media control in the On Demand world is in the hands of consumers. Consumers now have the choices and possess the ability to get what they want...right now. It "has profound implications for traditional business models in the media industry, which are based on aggregating large passive audiences and holding them captive during advertising interruptions," Andreas Kluth writes. And traditional media is still having a hard adapting their economic models, as they have always been based purely on their control, not the consumers.
Continues Kluth, "In the new-media era, audiences will occasionally be large, but often small, and usually tiny. Instead of a few large capital-rich media giants competing with one another for these audiences, it will be small firms and individuals competing or, more often, collaborating. Some will be making money from the content they create; others will not and will not mind, because they have other motives."
The spectrum of content control has been completely redefined in this YouTube/digital radio/Broadband universe. On one side of the spectrum, you have people creating stuff to build their own reputations, hoping to bubble up their content to the masses through avenues like viral video or podcasts. On the other side, superbrands such as Steven Speilberg will become their own content portals, with corporate mothership surrogates no longer needed.
Dive in and let the articles slowly digest...they are rich in content and useful for when you put your thinking cap on.
posted by Chris Kennedy @ Tuesday, June 13, 2006,