The rough shaking up that the media have suffered through in the past 10 years or so, and the different ways in which people now produce and consume information, qualifies as a real revolution. And it is just beginning. As the politically incorrect balladeer Al Jolson used to promise his audiences, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.
Advertisement - story continues below
The leading professionals and academics tend to echo Professor Sree Sreenivasan of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism: “We’re going to see as many and as dramatic changes in the next 10 years as the last 10.”
The vital signs of many media read like the obituaries. At the incredible shrinking newspaper, hawkers have a hard time even trying to give subscriptions away for free and circulation has declined for four straight years. Newspaper advertising sales are also down, and in the next several years they will be replaced by the Internet as the leading advertising medium. That will bring still another revolution in the newsrooms and the printing plants, with blood all over the balance sheets.