Reversing the Digital Slide

Jacques R. Bughin, ECommerce Research Forum, Dec 14, 2001
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Online media is foundering. What's more, traditional media - newspapers, magazines and even television networks - are also in trouble. It's quick and easy to blame the slumping market and September 11, but its misleading. A fundamental shift in media economics is happening, one that online educators should study closely. In a nutshell, "Scarce supply is the foundation of traditional media economics. The number of off-line media outlets is severely limited by the cost of producing masscirculation print publications or by the need to hold one of the few national broadcast licenses granted by governments. Entry to the Internet costs about one-tenth of what is required to enter the off-line media.CRLFThis state of affairs has created two fundamental differences between on-lineCRLFand off-line economics. First, far more companies are vying for the availableCRLFadvertising dollars on-line. Second, most Web sites that pursue subscribers face direct competition from sites that replicate the model of broadcast television by supplying free parallelCRLFcontent..." Yet another PDF document.
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