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2005-2006 | MEDIA TRENDS

Looking into the future and recognizing the past year, The Hollywood Reporter said it well-- "If 2005 was the year that digital broadband technology took the media and entertainment industries by surprise, then 2006 will be the year it takes control." We couldn't agree more. In the coming years the digital transition literally requires out-of-the-box thinking. 2005 was the year of a digital media frenzy, and 2006 is likely to be about empowering consumers—and that's big business.

Among the trends and issues that are likely to continue to shape media and entertainment:

In the Future: Microsoft, IBM, Intel, AT&T, and others are developing technologies to make it easy to watch Internet programming—much of it yet to be produced—on in-home TV sets.

In the Future: High Tech Star 'Google' is positioning itself to be the leader in everything media including the sale of a Gooogle PC with it's own proprietary operating system. Traditional media may be running scared...

In the Future: Content is King. The paradigm for marketing television shows has shifted, turning marketers and producers into partners. Other industries will follow.

In the Future: Portable digital media will edge out the TV remote control or the DVD disc.

In the Future: Video games will grow to become part of an integrated service

In the Future: In 2006 Americans will consume, on average, more than 9.5 hours of media daily and pay $888 in the course of the year for media options ranging from magazine subscriptions to DVDs, according to the forecast of Veronis Suhler Stevenson.

In the Future: Print feels the Pressure. Magazine advertising is stuggling for market share due to increased interest in TV and the net. Publishers will look to integrate advertising packages with internet and TV.

In the Future: What will happen to local access? Local access means giving communities the ability to create their own media and the power to decide how to best serve their own technology and communications needs. Those needs include everything from public access television channels to universal broadband Internet service. The largest cable and telecom companies are trying to take away community control.

In the Future: Will it work? Reality shows out and Epics in.

In the Future: Hi definition programming is the new and improved look. Analog will be out by 2009. Better be digital by then, or lose your TV forever.

In the Future: Global subscriptions and advertising on handheld devices, will total $10 billion in 2010 and reach $50 billion five years after that according to Bernstein Research.

In the Future: Who will own the Internet? With little fanfare, there is a battle going on for the soul of the Internet. The United Nations and the International Communications Union (ITU) are trying to wrest control of domain names, the DNS and IP addresses from ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). This battle manifests itself through the U.N.-created World Summit on Information Society (WSIS) and the ITU-lead Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG)

In the Future: The model of one media entity owning outlets across multiple platforms is one that is not new to the industry. And it's likely to be something that will continue in the future. Conglomerates like Gannett, Clear Channel, and Time Warner hold a large stake in many forms of communication that Americans use on a daily basis.

In the Future:
By 2010, podcast downloaders will reach (median estimate) 60 million, with 18 million a week.

In the Future:
Video-on-demand is expected to top $6 billion in revenue by 2014, Kagan Media Research.

In the Now: Data Mining Misinformation. News stories and research are getting out on the internet in nanoseconds, but watch out, journalists at traditional newspapers always had the time to develop well-researched and fact-checked stories. With citizen journalism, blogs and increased pressure to get the news out fast—it gets out wrong, as we've seen recently, with the West Virginia Coal Mine explosion. Rely on well-respected sources for news.

2005: Spreading the word. Blogging and podcasting became a huge part of the media culture and citizen journalism is on the rise. Advertisers are paying bloggers to send positive messages about their products.

2005: Broadband, a growing phenomenon. 60% of all U.S. home computers are now operating with broadband allowing more video content to agressively flow. However, broadband adoption is highly dependent on socio-economic status. Almost 60 percent of households with incomes above $150,000 have a broadband connection, while less than 10 percent of households with incomes below $25,000 have a connection.

2005: Product placements were sly. Mercedes-Benz and Gucci are mentioned in 50 Cent rap songs, in fact 50 Cent dropped 19 brand names into his songs this year, a big jump from the 5 he mentioned last year. Club crackers, Cheez-its, Nutri-grain bars and Star-Kist tuna showed up in CBS episodes of "Yes Dear" and the NBC show "The Apprentice" seemed created merely as a one hour product placement. American Idol had an average of 83 product placements per show.

2005: According to a recent release by Bridge Ratings for user growth in the podcast universe, based on interviews with radio listeners in ten national markets, 4.8 million persons (up from 820,000 podcast users in 2004) have at some time during 2005 downloaded a podcast from either a radio station or other source. The study estimates that iTunes was referenced as the most often accessed portal for podcast downloads.

2005: Advertising revenue is up big time on the internet. Corporations are shifting advertising dollars from mainstream media to the net.

2005: The Center for Media Research launched a report that confirmed that consumers between the ages of 35 and 54 accounted for 45% of all online video watched in 2005.

2005: America Online’s broadcast of the Live 8 concert in July was watched by a five million people.

2005: The new media model and small screens are 'big'. ABC's 'Lost' is easy to find, and not just on a TV screen. Consumers can get fixes from iPods, cellphones, blogs, podcasts. Marketers are scrambling to figure out how to jump onto this media content bandwagon.

2005: As if best selling video game "Grand Theft Auto, San Andreas" didn't have enough violence already, its maker Rockstar Games added hidden animated sex scenes. The soft-core porn ignited a political firestorm forcing a new "adults-only" rating reported the Wall Street Journal. Other coverage said Best Buy and Circuit City pulled the game from their stores.

2005: Satellite radio gets a push. Howard Stern's stint on traditional radio is over. Sirius. XM. Now Motorola has it's own cell phone radio service, iRadio.

2005: Video on Demand (VOD). Consumers tap into huge libraries of videos--first-run films, news footage from remote corners of the world,home movies, and then play them on their computers, televisions and cell phones.
Consumers will continue to demand what they want, when and how they want it.

2005: News Fraud? Several "journalists" were exposed as propagandists on the White House payroll. It was then learned that broadcasters routinely air government-funded video news releases without disclosing their source; the White House has set aside a quarter billion taxpayer dollars to hire public relations firms and infiltrate our news system with fake news.


Media trend data has been researched and collected from the following publications: The Hollywood Reporter, Advertising Age, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Media Post, PR Newswire and the Center for Media Research.

VISIT THE VOICES OF HOPE BLOG, |THE EYE| to get the latest info on films, events, workshops and all-things media and pop culture with a socio-political point of view.


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"The first thing to keep in mind, is that your objective is not to make a 'TV show' or a 'show' of any kind. You are collecting evidence; you are encouraging witness; you are emboldening ordinary people to 'go public.'"

George Stoney from forward in
Turn on the Power! Using Media for









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