Hot Topic - Google
Media technology is constantly reshaping. Code-writing geniuses find new tricks to adapt people’s behavior for fun, profit or the attention of investors. Fewer business plans are written for advertising revenue these days, now that media buying is automated. Paywalls - in various forms - are like meters on oil wells.
Imagination is not something that can be bottled up and sold over the counter. It is impossible to contain, knows no boundaries, accepts few rules. Those who try always fall short simply because competitive imagination a force that binds us to human nature. It can be very frightening… and that’s good.
Journalists do have a way with words. It is their claim to fame, at least for those fortunate enough to find a bit. They are, understandably, sensitive to public perception of the Fourth Estate role and their position in it. Paper and ink journalism isn’t what the used to be. Today we might say “never pick a fight with someone who buys bandwidth by the terabyte.”
Last year was generally good to big media companies. Distribution companies, largely satellite and pay-TV, benefited greatly but content companies, largely TV and film producers, held their own. The web is evermore powerful and publishing only starting to recover.
Brand building is an engaging business. The media world is in that business, for itself and for others. The biggest brands get people talking which, in post-modern terms, has nothing to do with actually talking. Social media has usurped than function. This is fun when the brand message is fun, happiness or shopping, less so for oil spills and bank scandals.
Psychiatry often recommends the exercise of committing anxieties to writing. It offers to the therapist insight into the painful world of demons. To the patient it is release, desensitizing the fear. Affirmations, like ‘be happy’, work the same way.
Intellectual property rights laws are undoubtedly overdue for revision. The digital age has, remarkably, expanded access to a wide range of words, songs, pictures and ideas. Creating all that is work, deserving recognition. The laws see the door to those works as either open or closed. The simple solution is finding a different door.
See also in ftm Knowledge
Google Is... Still
Google's leaders say their goal is to change the world. And they have. Far more than a search engine, Google has impact over every media sector and beyond, from consumer behavior to broadcasting and advertising to newspapers. That impact is detailed in this ftm Knowledge file. 116 pages PDF (April 2015)
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Social Media Matures (...believe it or not...) – new
Hundreds of millions use social media, billions even. It has spawned revolutions, excited investors and confounded traditional media. With all that attention a business model remains unclear or it's simply so different many can't see it. What is clear is that there's no turning back. 114 pages, PDF (July 2016)
Investigative reporters have a storied honor among journalists. Praise is less forthcoming from those with secrets, often ready to use all possible means - legal and otherwise - to avoid detection. New tools are emerging to shed light and tell all. This ftm Knowledge file explores methods, old and new, and the forces prefering darkness. 54 pages PDF (May 2016)
Media in the Middle East and North Africa
The striking contrasts in the MENA region’s media are the hopes for new media, fears for traditional publishing and broadcasting amidst conflict and insecurity. This ftm Knowledge file notes the accomplishments and the reversals. 90 pages PDF includes Resources (April 2016)
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