A post picked up from here Tom Burton talks about the future of journalism
...and threaded by Trevor Cook, whom describes himself as a comms strategist with the line below, led to mu musings.
Yep I'm lost as well.
Trevor Cook says:
"Moffett argues online video consumers will only tolerate about two minutes of advertising per half hour and when a like for like comparison is done between TV and online video, web producers will need to produce content at 1/8th the cost of traditional TV to make the same returns. The question he asks: "Are content producers prepared to reduce production costs…by 88%? Moffett is pessimistic about the ability of Hollywood to make this transition and it is a question equally relevant to magazines and newspapers, as news organizations around the world seek to re-size and re-make their newsrooms and sales forces to fit with the new order.
I think the larger point here is that the web won't be able to do what mass media can do well and that is aggregate the large audiences that are needed to fund expensive content. Every medium finds its niche."
Re: your last point, if outfits with strong content, who want to bypass the costs/insurance inherent in Terrestrial and Satellite distribution, see the Net purely as a transmission source then we may probably not see the end of social grouping around the tele.
It's not the future we're promised by experts but. . . we'll watch television, it's just that the content will be coming down the web and with streaming data rates one day matching that of television, live transmission will make some economic sense. Livestation.com shows a slice of that future now.
Though, I agree with your broader premise about the web and aggregating large physical audiences... My pc, which at this point and time I predominantly access the web, is like my toothbrush - a selfish piece of harware.
So yes we won't probably won't gather around a 17 inch screen in the same way perhaps we do with TV, which knocks ad costs, but we'll increasingly share community space online whilst watching the same prog.
A family in the same house, in different rooms, watching the same prog whilst chatting with each other online and only gather together in a room for dinner ? Perish the thought.