Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Digital and Mainstream Media Convergence

I was thinking it is probably too late to write about the convergence of mainstream and digital media in any way other than from a historical perspective. That is how fast the process is unfolding. Digital media has forever changed the way we look, listen and learn. How long will it be until the term Mainstream Media means digital media?

Recently I made some comments about the convergence of media in Australia.

In the short amount of time between the invention of the World Wide Web in 1990 and today, traditional, or mainstream media, has been turned upside down. Here are just a few examples.

  • You can watch television on the Internet and you can access the Internet on your television.

  • Record labels watch recording artists defect to the Internet to sell their music directly to fans, and fans listen to their favorite music on their MP3 players.

  • Threatened by the alarming increase in digital music delivery devices, broadcast radio stations are busy re-engineering so they can stream their shows and music to the Internet and MP3 players.

  • RSS news feeds and blogs have replaced newspapers in millions of homes around the world and now you can watch your television news show in your browser any time of the day or night.

Traditional media delivery mechanisms, such as the radio, newspaper, television and theatre screen, have been thoroughly changed by the digital revolution. The change is so great, in fact, that many media experts are predicting the demise of the traditional media, or at least the demise of their current format.

For example, digital cameras and film have transformed the cinema and never before have independent film producers been such a large part of the mainstream. And it is exactly the fact that Indies are becoming mainstream that illustrates my point that the convergence is not just beginning, it is nearly complete.

It is only a matter of time, a very short time, until a wireless Internet-connected device, most likely no bigger than an iPod™, will deliver all of the new mainstream media right to the palm of your hand.

1 comment:

Jenny said...

Hi Jason
Great post- usually you read about the convergence of television and sometimes newspapers - thanks for including radio in the mix.