Posts Tagged ‘BBC’


Pretty soon you won’t be able to tell the difference between Fox and Hulu, HBO and Netflix, or CNN and YouTube.

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

sneetchesThe recent jockeying for position and struggle to find an identity within the crowded and competitive world of network, cable, streaming video, and online television reminds me of one of my favorite Dr. Seuss stories, The Sneetches. The Sneetches were a group of yellow creatures, some with green stars on their bellies (a sign of distinction) and some without, until a character named Sylvester McMonkey McBean offers those without stars a chance to add them by going through his Star-On machine. In order to stay special the Sneetches formerly with stars happily pay the money to have them removed in his Star-Off machine. Ultimately this escalates, with the Sneetches running from one machine to the next, and to quote the good Doctor,

“until neither the Plain nor the Star-Bellies knew whether this one was that one… or that one was this one or which one was what one… or what one was who.”

The last few month, the news out of the “television” world has been very Seuss-like to say the least:

At this year’s winter TV press tour Kevin Reilly, entertainment president, Fox Broadcasting Company, revealed that his network plans to use web content as a development tool for the airwaves. “Something that starts in digital could be the next big primetime hit… We have an expertise, and a history, and proficiency, and a primetime audience base,” he confirms in this Atlantic.com article about 5 Ways the Networks Want to Change How You Watch TV. Reilly goes on to use Web Therapy starring Lisa Kudrow (of Friends fame) as one example of a web-only series that has successfully made the switch and is now aired on Showtime.

In an effort to kick start their declining subscription base, Netflix is beginning to act more like a network rather than your average streaming video provider. By jumping into the original programming waters, Netflix plans to release three new series in 2012 – starting with Lilyhammer, a crime comedy set in Norway’s former Winter Olympics headquarters, starring The Soprano’s Steven Van Zandt. Not to be outdone and fresh off a year where they realized 60 percent revenue growth in 2011, the web streaming service Hulu is launching its first ever original scripted series. Battleground, a mockumentary series described as “The Office meets The West Wing, premieres February 14, explains, this opinion brief on TheWeek.com.

And remember when YouTube was just a site where you could watch short clips of people doing funny and unusual things? Well, last week Reuters joined CNN and the BBC by unveiling its own channel to be shown on the popular video sharing site. The channels will show original content from Reuters on YouTube, which will allow them to leverage an army of over 3,000 reporters worldwide.

I doubt all the players involved with getting content to the masses will end up in blissful harmony like our friends the Sneetches, but it should be fun watching them run from one machine to the next having their green stars removed and re-added over again.

What are your thoughts? Please share them with me here on BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas.

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Missouri State University PRSSA Day: Media Myths

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

mascom_PRSSA_smallLast week, I was honored to be a part of Missouri State University’s PRSSA Day as a speaker on social media misconceptions. One of the myths that we discussed was “Social media will soon replace traditional media as the most viable source of news,” and I wanted to elaborate on that point. 

At least once every week, or so it seems, someone comes out with a “Traditional media is dead” article or warns that “We shouldn’t waste time on traditional media and advertising.” As a matter of fact, I read an article several months ago about a survey on the subject by PR/PA agency mergers and acquisition consultants, StevensGouldPincus. SGP managing partner, Art Stevens was quoted as saying, “If this trend persists within the next two years social media will replace traditional media as PR/PA’s primary tool for reaching client audiences with news and information. When you consider that traditional media have been the bedrock of professional PR/PA practice for more than 100 years, the implications are profound.”

I’ll concede that the preferred vehicle for news distribution is definitely shifting to digital, real-time and even mobile platforms and I’ll agree that the implications are profound to communicators and consumers alike; however, the source of most of that content remains the same: The percentage of original content found on social media pales in comparison to traditional media. In reality, most news content is first published in the print or web editions of major news outlets, and then syndicated or picked up on social media networks and blogs, confirms this BurrellesLuce newsletter on “Social Media Myths and Misconceptions“.

In fact, according to a Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism study last year, “Blogs still heavily rely on the traditional press — and primarily just a few outlets within that — for their information. More than 99 percent of the stories linked to in blogs came from legacy outlets such as newspapers and broadcast networks. And just four — the BBC, CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post accounted for fully 80 percent of all links.”

So, let’s face it, without traditional media, in whatever form, there would be very little news to fuel social media. Will that change in the future? Perhaps. But as of today, traditional media is NOT dead.

Even if it is, perhaps that isn’t such a bad thing after all… Because as Seth Godin recently wrote in a post entitled, Bring Me Something Dead: “Dead means that they are no longer interesting to the drive-by technorati. Dead means that the curiosity factor has been satisfied, that people have gotten the joke… Only when an innovation is dead can the real work begin. That’s when people who are seeking leverage get to work, when we can focus on what we’re saying, not how (or where) we’re saying it…”

What do you think the future holds?

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Paid Content vs. Free Content, Apple vs. Google, Web Browsers vs. Apps…as we enter a new phase of digital media who will emerge victorious?

Monday, September 13th, 2010
paperboy

Image: www.aftermathnews.wordpress.com

In March 2009 I wrote my first blog post, here on BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas, about how emerging technologies and platforms were changing the way we consume news – supported by input I gathered from a media summit I had attended that featured panelists such as Joe Scarborough from MSNBC’s Morning Joe and BBC’s Rome Hartman.

I wrote, “And with the rise of ‘citizen journalism’ and this ‘Pro-Am’ partnership that is developing with media, the panel agreed that consumers will have a stronger need for trusted brands, filtering, and editing to help navigate the media.” A year and a half later, the cream seems to be rising to the top in this fragmented media universe.

Today the “trusted brands,” such as The New York Times, are beginning to abandon the old business model of offering free content in exchange for paid advertisements. They are instead looking to generate additional revenue by putting their text, audio, and video behind pay walls or by offering their content as an app for a small fee. “I think we should have done it years ago,” said David Firestone, a deputy national news editor commenting on the NYT’s decision to put some of their content behind paywalls beginning in 2011. “As painful as it will be at the beginning, we have to get rid of the notion that high-quality news comes free.”

The Times Co. Chairman and publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. added, “This is a bet, to a certain degree, on where we think the Web is going…This is not going to be something that is going to change the financial dynamics overnight.”

In fact, no one is sure where the web is going; this undeniable shift away from free content will certainly make life more difficult for the Googles of the world who rely on free content to fuel their search engine. Consumers may turn to company’s like Apple for their media, who adopted the “paid content” model early on by making content available for small fees through iTunes and more recently showing consumers how convenient it is to access a magazine or newspaper digitally for a small fee on their iPad.

 Fox News this week launched its new iPhone political app, available through iTunes for 99 cents. “The idea is that this is your essential guide to daily political news,” says Chris Stirewalt, Fox News digital politics editor, “to put power into peoples’ hands to give them the opportunity in this history making, nation shaping election, to have the tools at hand so that they can really understand and add to the depth of their experience.”

With more people opting to have their media pushed to their smart phones and iPads rather than retrieving information over the Internet it will be interesting to see how this affects web browser traffic. As free content slowly disappears, news websites and aggregators such as the Drudge Report and the Daily Beast may have a tougher time filling their sites with the hyperlinks that contain the raw material that drives much of their sites traffic. Instead the eyeballs will be looking in other directions – with more people willing to pay for content this may ultimately prove to be the antidote that saves a hemorrhaging newspaper industry.

It appears we are on the verge of coming full circle on how we get our news. We’ve gone from relying on newsstands and subscriptions to searching and accessing free content online, only to return to paying the publishers directly once again for their content through app fees and online subscriptions.

Paperboys and newsstand operators may be on the verge of extinction; however, content providers like newspapers, network, and cable TV and movie studios may have the final say in how their product is consumed after all.

As public relations and marketing professionals, how are you getting your news? How do you think the evolving media landscape will affect your ability to successfully conduct media relations and assess the value of your efforts?

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Apps I LOVE for the DROID

Friday, August 6th, 2010

Picture of New York Sky Line Taken By Johna Burke, BurrellesLuce, With 8-mega pixal Droid Camera

I recently joined the Droid world. I LOVE my Droid Incredible. The coverage is amazing, the clear picture and fast processor allow me to view websites and videos on the go, access Adobe files with crisp clarity and truly work “in the cloud.” And of course the tool that every public relations professional needs at all times – a camera. The Droid comes with a 8 mega pixel camera for all your photo needs. But my real Droid joy comes from the many apps I now have at my fingertips.

I don’t know how many apps are too many or too few. After reviewing the app marketplace I downloaded, tested, and kept the following free apps to help organize and maximize my mobile experience:

AndroNews: Provides fast links to major news sources: CNN, USA Today, WSJ.com and BBC to name a few.

Evernote: My most-used, must-have app for organizing notes on all of my devices. The “cloud” at its finest.

Facebook: Full-featured Facebook interface.

FourSquare: Not totally sure why, but I continue to “check-in” from time to time.

Google Goggles: Snap a picture and launch an automatic Google search of whatever you’ve scanned. *CAUTION people searches yield XXX results

Magic8Ball: To help with my really tough day-to-day decisions.

Scanlife: Allows me to engage and maximize the QR Code experience.

TMZ: Celebrity gossip. A supplement to my subscription to People!

Touiteur: My Twitter app of choice. I tried several apps, including the Twitter app and found Touiteur to be the best, most feature-rich.

UrbanSpoon: Scouting new restaurants either at home or on the road.

Where: Provides easy-access reviews and allows local vendors to send me coupons when I’m in proximity of their location.

All of the apps I share here are free. I don’t mind paying for an app if it’s good, but there are so many great free apps you don’t necessarily have to invest to maximize your mobile experience. Though I caution you before settling on any apps; thoroughly read the reviews. Don’t be fooled by the overall rating. Upon digging deeper into the reviews I realized many of the reviewers who provided detailed feedback actually ranked the app lower than the overall rating. Those higher ratings were primarily just the rating with a very brief “It’s excellent” or some mundane response.

I know we have a lot of Blackberry, iPhone and Droid users who follow the BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas blog so I ask you to please share: What are your go-to apps? How do you use them to stay organized and be more efficient? If you are in PR or media relations have you helped create an app for your brand or client’s initiative? Can you give examples of successful app marketing campaigns?

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Emerging Technologies and Platforms are Changing How We Consume News

Friday, March 13th, 2009

News ConsumptionWith the hope of catching a glimpse of what’s coming around the curve with new media and it’s affect on broadcast and online journalism, I attended the first Media Summit hosted by Mediabistro.com this past Tuesday. We heard from members of three panels, including Joe Scarborough, current host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe, BBC’s Rome Hartman, Rachel Stern, CEO of the Ground Report, and Michael Meyers, co-founder of NowPublic.com.

Each brought an interesting perspective on how blogs, social networking sites, and the advent of instant, inexpensive distribution technology are turning passive consumers into active producers. This revolutionary period of news reporting is forcing old media to take a look at working with new technology without compromising their reputation and credibility. We’ve all heard how the very first pictures from breaking news stories, such as the plane landing in the Hudson River, were first obtained by Twitter. In my opinion, comparing someone who “tweets” to an accredited news journalist from a major source is like comparing a day trader to an investment banker at a major bank. There’s no denying we live in an age where instant gratification has permeated even the way we consume news. The question: will the consumer have to decide on the distinction between reporting and journalism, or will old and new media morph into the perfect blend of both?
 
Although opinions differed on how new technology should be used when reporting the news, one point of agreement was that people today are consuming news more than ever. And with the rise of “citizen journalism” and this “Pro-Am” partnership that is developing with media, the panel agreed that consumers will have a stronger need for trusted brands, filtering, and editing to help navigate the media. Michael Meyers from NowPublic, who pioneered the concept of “citizen journalism,” mentioned they’ve begun ranking their contributors with a point system to lend credibility to their “citizen reporting.”  
 
What I learned on Tuesday is that it’s not a zero sum game between old and new media. Most of the panelists concurred that old media is not going away anytime soon. Most of the raw material used by bloggers is still coming from mainstream media. Both sides are sharing best practices with each other to adapt to an ever-changing media landscape. Hopefully in the end they will be able to combine the credible investigative reporting to which our older generation has become accustomed and the instant distribution the younger generation demands – continuing to feed a consumer base with a ferocious appetite for news.

The Online Journalism Blog has some interesting insights into the changing media landscape, as well. Care to share yours with me and the other folks at BurrellesLuce?

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