Traditional media has for a long time been dominated by syndication of content as a revenue stream. The big news agencies Reuters, AP, AFP and so forth have with great success built their businesses’ around syndication of content (or financial data in the case of Reuters) in a walled-garden type of manner. You subscribe to a news wire which feeds you content. This model is outdated as the freedom of distribution together with an ever so improving accessibility of content on the web has forever changed this. This is very much similar to the enormous disruption of file sharing the the music industry has faced since a few some years back, who had a similar walled-garden attitude of their market. Content is just too accessible, completely borderless, cheap and free from any major constraints these days. The news industry is starting to realize this fact and is starting to take few trembling steps but still makes the same mistakes as the music industry made.
A few weeks back I wrote a blog entry in which I stated that syndication is an out-dated model. It might be a bit too bold to claim that fully, but yet news wires are outdated in their traditional sense. They as the music industry have to realize that the scenery has changed. The future of media will be conversational, more free, more interactive, more collaborative, and more diverse of perspectives. The traditional news wire concept does not fit very well here. The future of news wires is topically defined content streams rather than the blunt broadcasting via news wires, and this will be based on the interests of the consumers. (Cf keyword targeted advertising versus billboard advertising.) I am fully aware of the challenges here and that the future laid out in EPIC 2014, is something we all have to be constantly aware of and reflect upon.
News wires as well as other content will compliment and support other content, and mashupped with other content to provide the consumers with insight of how these content pieces are related. Basically it is about showing all the different views and perspectives about the real happening or opinion to shed more light on the multifaceted reality we live in. The cool part is that this becomes something very entertaining and engaging. It makes the news more tangible and relatable, which helps creators, producers, and consumers in all their roles of the media scene. Each can focus on what they are supposed to be focusing on: creators on the creation part, producers on the production and most importantly readers will have the content ready and packaged. Yep, the future is really content packaging.
Now over to the mind blowing component. As you make the news and opinions more tangible and relatable you will make it much easier to have a conversation about it You have all the pieces there, all the angles and hey are are all graspable and human. The conversational aspect of the media together with the content mashup creates room for something as cool as content-based social networking – networking based on your interests, and not necessarily “friendship”. Most people’s content-based network will be bigger than their circle of friends event though it is likely that your friends are part of your content-based network. Why? Well it really is as easy we tend to discuss topics with a much broader group of people than solely our friends. What is different thought is that it is more organic, it is different based on topic, on location and on your mood. It is constantly evolving and growing as you grow. It is an organic creature that constantly shifts and reforms. Basically it is the online dinner table, coffee or pub conversation bringing a human face to any topic around the world – from the local to the global level. Now imagine if you could tie in the cellphone component and you have a very yummy mixture that lets anyone discuss anything with anyone at any time – borderless, raw and human. Did I tell you it is pretty darn entertaining too?
Wow! That’s neat!