What's this? IBM going media 2.0? Big Blue has released a Noir-themed report entitled 'Navigating the Media Divide: Innovating and Enabling New Business Models.' It comes with a movie inspired design and pitch:

"Traditional and new media are clashing. The old rules on content and distribution: gone. Traditional alliances: unreliable. Long-established partnerships: threatened. Everything’s changing. Prepare for an epic conflict."

All it's missing is "In a world where..." as the opening line. Anyway, it looks like some IBM employees had fun with it and the report is a good distillation of current 'media 2.0' themes, albeit couched in IBM's corporate lingo.

There are some interesting stats in the report, e.g. on music IBM points out that "In 2005, digital and mobile music accounted for about 12 percent of total industry revenue; by 2010, it will nearly rival physical media, helping the industry recovery in the process."

4 Media Platforms

The report goes on to suggest that "four divergent business models will likely coexist at least through 2010, with many media companies experimenting with multiple models simultaneously." Here is their graphic of this framework:

Source: IBM

The problem going forward is that walled communities will continue to be highly profitable. On the user/community content side, IBM estimates that "by 2010, annual revenues for walled communities will reach $240 billion for bundled community and traditional content." Examples are NTT DoCoMo and Comcast's partnership with Facebook. However for new platform aggregation, which IBM defines as open distribution platforms combined with user-generated content, it estimates that by 2010 annual revenues will reach $50 billion. New Platform Aggregation includes companies like YouTube, MySpace.com and Second Life.

For the two professional content models, IBM states that Content hyper-syndication (professionally produced content available in open and portable channels, e.g. BBC iPlayer) will reach $25B by 2010, while Traditional media will be $340B.

IBM goes on to make a number of suggestions for media companies "to win in the new media world". None of it is new to R/WW readers, as it includes things we've written about for years, like: focus on the user, leverage user data, give control to users, "Deliver experiences, not just content", etc. There's 10 suggestions in all, including some generic ones like "Innovate business models" (you don't say....).


So traditional media will still be ahead of user/community content in terms of revenues by 2010, according to IBM's analysis. If that is on the mark, then the real concern to Web tech fans is that open platform revenues will remain low compared to walled gardens. I'm sure many R/WW readers will hope that open platforms do make more money over time than IBM is estimating, but it has to be said that Facebook isn't setting a good example in that respect (nor did MySpace of course).

Interesting to see IBM tackling media 2.0. Overall there's some great data in the report, although not much new in the way of conclusions or action points.

[Via Widgify]