Rupert Murdoch speech to newspaper editors
Some actual insight from Murdoch on the many problems plaguing newspapers and “old media” generally. So, he acknowledges there’s a problem and he actually sees where some things are going. The first step to recovery is to acknowledge you have a problem.
Yet, Murdoch launches into this:
And we in this room – newspaper editors and journalists – are uniquely positioned to deliver that news. We have the experience, the brands, the resources, and the know-how to get it done. We have unique content to differentiate ourselves in a world where news is becoming increasingly commoditized. And most importantly, we have a great new partner to help us reach this new consumer – the internet.
And later says that:
Our job now is to bring this content profitably into the broadband world – to marry our video to our publishing assets, and to garner our fair share – hopefully more than our fair share — of the advertising dollars that will come from successfully converging these media.
Myopia caused by greed? Pretty common these days as people seek short-term gains (“Make Money Quick!”) rather than riding the wave in major social changes (at a time when technological and scientific breakthroughs are rare).
Similarly, the “recording industry” is ready to acknowledge that the world is changing but is reluctant to do anything about it. Contrary to Murdoch, who apparently understands that embracing change is the most appropriate solution, they seem to see change as a problem they are committed to fight. The “recording industry” just wants things to stay the same. And they keep on dismissing music lovers as “petty thieves” because they can’t gouge consumers in the same way anymore. Even when told that music lovers want to pay for the privilege of easy access to music, record industry executives raise “the stick.”
So, the “big corporations” that are being hit by social changes might say things that range from somewhat insightful to utterly clueless. Not surprising but still. Why don’t they understand? Maybe it’s because they’re unwilling to take risks. Successes in many domains such as art, science, and technology often come out of experimentation. Trial and error. These corporations “can’t afford” to err, according to their investors? So they will fail, eventually. Not because the world is changing so much. The changes have been minute so far. But because they fail to see the big picture and “go with the flow” without knowing where the flow is leading.
«Qui n’essaie rien n’a rien», as we say. “They” will be left with nothing.
The beautiful ones are not yet born. And this revolution will not be televised.