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June 21, 2009

The rise of non traditional media

This has been an extraodrinary week for the rise of non traditional media.

We started off the week with the Daily Show's classic question of the New York Times, "Why do you think aged news is better than real news." Within days we saw Twitter, and other social media sites, absolutely wipe the floor with CNN, BBC and all the traditional media sources.

Throughout the week the social media space hummed with breaking news out of Iran, traditional news outlets seemed more and more to be narrating from the sidelines instead of bringing us bold new facts.

Then came the end of the week, and an event that really stood out for me. All the mainstream guys were confined to barracks in their hotels - but the news continued to stream out.

Videos, Facebook pages, blogs and of course, Twitter as an epicenter.

Every time we hear of one of the newspapers in trouble the standard refrain is that they are an "institution". They play an important role, they are essential to democracy and they shine a light on the darkest corners of business and society ensuring that true justice is done...

Ah... no they don't... (still stinging over their role in the Iraq debacle) and even if they did - do we still need to be passed our information by an institution?

We've been talking about it for years, and now it is finally starting to become a reality.

News is passing from the hands of the few to the hands of the many. A many-to-many world of communication where you cannot hide. Where everyone is Bob Woodward and you had better be playing it straight... or we'll find out.

A world where everyone is armed, via their telephone, with the means of getting the story, and the facts, direct to you within moments of it occurring.

The race is now on to provide the centers for these masses to send their stuff to. When CNN launched their I Report news service (Unfiltered, Unedited etc...) I really saw it as a "me too", type of initiative. Like your Dad trying to show your friends how cool he still is...

Now, it is starting to look like Iran is to their I Report service what Iraq was to them and cable news in general.

Fascinating time to be around...

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