Everyday we read about the on-going conflict between new media (podcasting, YouTube et al, live video streaming) and traditional media (television, radio). While I believe there is a place for both in our media diet, there is a clear inevitability that new media will displace television, just as television did to radio.
Many-to-many media is quickly on the way to supremacy. The success of TiVO and video on-demand services makes it clear that the audience wants more control over their media and they want to consume “what they want, when they want, where they want it”. No matter what traditional media companies might create, anything that follows the old “broadcasting” model will continue to lose ground to media that provides interactivity and an on-demand accessibility, whether that is on a television set, computer screen or even our (ever more capable) cell phones. It would be folly to assume that new media is simply going to dry up and blow away.
The new media genii can’t be put back in the bottle. The audience has experienced the freedom that comes with new distribution methods and they like it. In time they will even come to love it.
The new media genii can’t be put back in the bottle. The audience has experienced the freedom that comes with new distribution methods and they like it. In time they will even come to love it. The Internet has changed the media playing field and it will never be what it once was. A once scarce resource, broadcasting bandwidth, has now been rendered obsolete. People have more and more opportunities for entertainment, created by people who would have never had a voice in traditional media. It is just as likely that you will be watching a show produced by your next door neighbor as one produced by NBC, ABC, and CBS, Worse still, without some major changes in the industry, the cost of network production will eventually outpace their advertising revenue as advertisers discover and adopt the new media advertising world. We are already seeing the beginning of that today.
It is my hope that traditional media workers will come to recognize this inevitable progression and bring their talent and creativity to what is, after all, merely a new distribution channel. They have skills and talent that can be better used in a new media world where projects actually get produced instead of suffering endless succession of pitch sessions that result in nothing but disappointment. Yes, budgets will be smaller, but just like new media’s ascendancy, it is inevitable that money will continue to flow into new media until we are seeing show budgets much like their traditional media ancestors.
Are you interested in the interchange between new and traditional media, join New Media Interchange, a group dedicated to bringing technology, creativity and entertainment together.
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