In his book, The Long Tail, Chris Anderson, editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine, states that "our culture and economy is increasingly shifting away from a focus on a relatively small number of "hits" (mainstream products and markets) at the head of the demand curve and toward a huge number of niches in the tail". He believes that niche items can now be more successful in the marketplace. Gerd and Glen discuss this concept, particularly as it relates to future developments.
The old-fashioned telephone continues to decline as a method of conversing. The digital native generation isn't even using email much. Instead, communications has become part of the multitasking environment. Gerd and Glen discuss how these changes will affect the future of communication and conversation. They talk about how texting and video communications will continue to create different ways to interact than older systems.
One of the most important byproducts of the lower costs of mass storage is that virtually everything can now be saved forever. In addition, the ability of an artist to self-produce and reach an audience has made the future hopeful for both the creator and the consumer. Gerd and Glen discuss how these changes will make the future less hopeful for the intermediaries.
User generated content has clearly changed the world. With the explosion of blogs, recordings, and videos, consumers have now become publishers. Gerd and Glen discuss how the desire of so many people to say so much will continue to grow unabated. They talk about how PR firms are now trying to reach bloggers and how Hollywood is now looking at YouTube and other video sites to find the next group of filmmakers.
In the digital world, where information can be spread easily, there is a counterforce attempting to lock it up. Shared culture, illustrated by the creative commons movement, continues to be fought against by traditional commercial culture. Gerd and Glen discuss these issues, assessing how things are likely to change in the future. They talk about how content owners have found ways to quickly filter internet content to assert their copyright rights and share examples about how companies are trying to find ways to be part of the sharing process.
Advertising has always been something we suffered through, particularly in such passive activities as television watching. On the other hand, online advertising has become more context sensitive. Glen and Gerd discuss how this new model will continue to grow in the future as a better way to reach consumers. They review some possible ways to do this, including how Google is already working to better get the advertiser's message across to the user.
In general terms, Web 2.0 has been described as a more interactive, less passive form of the web. In truth, it is actually the culmination of ideas first proposed during the initial phase of the web. In this episode, Gerd and Glen speculate on what will be the next phase of web development. They look at how Digital Natives are not aware of a difference between online and offline and how this will help shape the web in the coming years.
What are the challenges to traditional copyright caused by technology? What new rules must be written to protect intellectual property rights, but not overly limit usage in an age where the computer is a copying device and the internet is a giant network of copying devices? In this episode of Future Talks, Gerd and Glen discuss how technology is leaving old rules behind They also talk about open source and how it relates to possible changes in the current copyright model. They also review how patents are subject to the same technology challenges.
Glen Hiemstra and Gerd Leonhard talk about the important megatrends that are shaping the future of media. They discuss a number of topics, including user generated content and media, globalization, access versus ownership, copyright versus usage right, the digital natives, the net generation and the aging of the baby boomers, the growth in wireless broadband and mobility, convergence, the decline of the hit culture, the rise of the ubiquity paradigm and much more.
The future is creatable and can be planned for. It has an effect on the present because it tells us what to get ready for and it can change how you think about tomorrow. Glen Hiemstra, founder and owner of Futurist.com and author of the book Turning the Future into Revenue, discusses the important concept of future planning. He talks about how to plan for the future and reviews both positive and negative examples of business future planning.