Going up in smoke: the future of the media


The future of the media is smoke signals.

At least, that is what one of the panelists said jokingly when asked the first question, First we had smoke signals, later Gutenberg’s printing press, today we have the iPad, ‘What’s next?’.

The reality of his comment could not have been more apparent.

While the four panelists, representing SB Nation, Aol., CNN and the Washington Post, talked on stage about their vision of the future, audience members held their own discussion via Twitter.

tbridge Hearing CNN, WaPo and AOL talk about new opportunities in media is like hearing the buggywhip makers talk about cars. #dcwfom

Karpantschof Funny. Attending The Future of Media session (w/AOL, CNN, Wash Post) and not hearing a word about the future. What a shame. #dcwfom

ladyglock I was kind of surprised AOL had anything to say really. #dcwfom

NicoleInDC Someone from @TBDDC should’ve been on this panel. #justsayin #dcweek #dcwfom

hashtager # I really wish the panel monitored the hashtag – or at least the uncomfortable squirming in the audience.#dcweek #dcwfom

darthcheeta I feel sorry for the panelists when they read the twitstream. #dcwfom

The tweets kept rolling in.

The panelists for DC Week’s Future of the Media talk at National Geographic were: Vijay Ravindran, Senior Vice President and Chief Digital Officer of The Washington Post, Jim Bankoff CEO of SB Nation, Meredith Artley, editor at CNN and Martin Durkin of Aol.

“Content is king,” Meredith Artley of CNN said, one of the four panelists while talking about what will drive media of the future. “It’s all about the story you are trying to tell, whether it is the disaster in the gulf, protest or a unique feature piece, the story always comes first. The future is not about one medium you use to tell the story it is about the best way to tell the story.”

The story for this panel was the backstory.

Their analysis of the media shift from old media to online media was presented and discussed, while users of the online media both applauded and criticized their ability to fully understand the impact of online media in a old media world.

The media industry is in a formative stage right now, content has become unbundled from distribution,” Jim Bankoff of SB Nation, said. “One of the things we are going to see is a redistribution of big distribution channels. Content is no longer the king, it is the kingdom.”

Vijay Ravindran from the Washington Post said new business models are still emerging and it is creating a lot of uncertainty for traditional media.

“The print medium is under tremendous pressure,” he said. “We are hunting for the right business model for us to allow journalism to occur [online].”

Success is not just the percentage of revenue you get from advertising, Ravindran said. Every person that decides not to buy a paper and get news online is bad for our business.

ArielDL Have a feeling #dcwfom panel is just figuring out how very interested audience is in specifics on ROI and CPM. Can have a redo? #dcweek

jeffsonderman #dcwfom RT @davewiner: @jeffsonderman– big companies rarely innovate.

jeffsonderman REALLY wish we had a blogger on this panel to question some assumptions #dcwfom

darthcheeta If #dcwfom panelists are in charge of the future of media and advertising, RUN don’t walk to your broker and SELL your stock!

jodiontheweb Panelists on the Future of Media panel are from AOL, CNN.com and WaPo. Take from that what you will. #dcwfom

angelambrown: Trying so hard not to lol. Tweets have been better than panel #dcweek#dcwfom

EricHLewis Now, the internet is everywhere, fast, and endless. Thank you, captain obvious #dcwfom

bydanielvictor Can we please stop calling it citizen journalism? If not, can we please stop pitting it a corner opposite “real journalism”? #dcweek #dcwfom

mjenkins The #dcwfom panel is increasingly becoming a big media backslap session. Feeling smirky here in the#heyTBD corner. #dcweek

mpranikoff Best line of this panel so far to the moderator “No, I don’t want to answer that”. Finally breathed some life into the audience #dcwfom

melaniephung This panel about “future of media” needs a lot more focus on “future”. #dcwfom #dcweek



For more on the conversation follow #dcwfom on Twitter.

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