Home How Web technology is changing (into) media

How Web technology is changing (into) media

Late last week it was surprisingly revealed that Microsoft now aims to be a media company, rather
than a software company. This was in the context of Microsoft’s launch of its adCenter
product, a direct competitor to Google’s Adsense and Adwords. But there it was in black
and white, in a Microsoft press

“”Ad-supported software services are an integral part of Microsoft’s plans to give
consumers access to a broader variety of digital media, whenever they want and on
whatever device they prefer,” said Ballmer. “Our close partnership with the ad community
is extremely important to us as we evolve Microsoft from a software company into the
world’s largest, most attractive provider of online media
through MSN, Windows
Live(TM) and adCenter.”

(emphasis mine)

When the world’s biggest and most successful software company ever proclaims itself to
be a media company, you know the times they are a changin’.

Then I saw this MediaShift
with I Want Media editor Patrick
Phillips, who is also an adjunct professor of digital journalism at New York University.
‘I Want Media’ has been going since 2000 and it offers an excellent daily email – a comprehensive
daily list of links to media/tech stories (thanks Scott
for telling me about it).

Phillips is in a better position than most to comment on how the media world is being
changed by technology. When asked “How has your coverage at I Want Media changed over
that time?”, he responded:

“[…] If anything, though, it’s probably more that Net and technology companies
are encroaching steadily into the traditional media world.

When I launched IWM in July 2000, Google was just a young search engine. There was no
Google Adwords. Google News was still two years off in the future. Now, of course, Google
is taking steps into several traditional media strongholds, taking more and more
advertising dollars away from “old” media. Yahoo is also moving aggressively
into many traditional media areas. In addition, blogs and social networks like MySpace
have emerged in recent years as legitimate alternative forms of media.

Traditional media companies are now eyeing them as possible acquisition targets
— and as rivals. The concept of “media” itself has broadened beyond
print and over-the-air to include digital and search.
So, naturally, IWM covers the
activities of these kinds of companies as well. Google is now a media company just as
much as Time Warner.”

(emphasis mine)

This incidentally is why I changed the focus of Read/WriteWeb at the beginning of 2006
to be about tech/media, rather than specifically ‘web 2.0’ (although in reality I’m still
more tech focused than media).

So talk about convergence, the tech and media worlds are
pretty much one and the same these days!

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