Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Future of Journalism

Indeed, like some of my comrades, I too have been following the future of journalism argument between Jeff Jarvis and Ron Rosenbaum. Well, let me be totally transparent. I'm aware of the argument and have scanned a few blog posts. However, I did read Amy Webb's assessment on her blog atMyDigiMedia.com. The argument and reading about it uses up time that I could dedicate to creating content, learning more new media tools and reading blogs like Amy's. Check out her previous posts. The information is beyond thought provoking.

Webb will be the keynote speaker here at Belmont University in February, 2009 for the Southeast Journalism Conference. After hearing her speak at the Online News Association convention in DC in September, I knew I wanted to learn as much as I could from her. The strategies she shares can be used by any business and/or individual. It all boils down to your mindset. Caution: reading Amy's blog may literally blow your mind.

My thoughts on the future of journalism are simple, right now the business is for sale and its worth will depend on innovation, managing disruption and change. That's bull, its worth is being determined by the shareholders and that's why the business model is in such a tailsping. Yes, declining number of viewers and readers are a key part as well. But the content is being sacrificed for superficial entertainment stories. And the reason for that is because the stakeholders want more money.

Given the strategies of the current leaders, the future looks bleak. However, there is always hope in the form of the next generation. As I've said before and I'll say again, mobile is the next frontier and more video is as well. Asian countries are already using video more consistently than those of us in the US. Think video cell phone calls and more.


Matt said...

It's interesting that you blame the shareholders for the decline of the business in journalism.

It makes me wonder, then, who the shareholders of the future of journalism. Some argue it ought to be the people, and advocate for a public, or private/public model for journalism.

If the most recent round of funding for HuffPo gives any clue, the future shareholders of journalism are VC firms.

Your thoughts?

Dr. Syb said...

Hi Matt,
No Sir, there is plenty of blame to go around. I just mention the money piece because it's so relevant right now. I also talked about the lack of content, sensationalism, leadership etc. The bottom line is that the news industry doesn't embrace change. Therefore, they are suffering just like so many other industries because of the disruptive technologies a la Clayton Christensen.