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Can Internet kill television?

In our hurry to move ahead, we always expect the new to finish off the old, writes Deepak Mankar.

business Updated: Feb 17, 2006 17:35 IST

In our hurry to move ahead, we always expect the new to finish off the old, I guess. When television's many channels came our way, we saw it as the probable end of cinema. With the coming of the Internet, we are wondering if it's television's death knell. Actually, what has happened to Indian cinema of late is the revolution of the multiplexes. Radio too seems to be alive and well. As Sunil Lulla, CEO, Times Global Broadcasting Company pointed out the other day at the OgilvyOne Global Digital Summit, Verge, in Mumbai: "With hundreds of radio stations ready to be launched across India, one can't even say that radio is dead, leave aside television." L Subramanyan, president and publishing director, Jasubhai Digital Media, argued that television was still "the single most entertaining media in rural India", while the Internet could be "used to seek growth in other fields such as education, and information". HLL's Dalip Sehgal cited the example of the internet kiosk-based offering, 'I-Shakti', a community led portal offering information on health, entertainment, education and social issues with around 80 per cent of households having at least one member signed up for it in its area of coverage. "The Internet will not kill television," opined Jonathan Baron, MSN, Asia Pacific, regional director (sales). He felt that, with the new age technologies (wireless and broadband) evolving, what counts is how a marketer earns consumer trust and delivers a message relevant to the consumer.business-standard.

Blogs over-hyped? Not really top of the pop, says Gallup.

Are blogs over-hyped by media? A recent Gallup Poll survey of Internet users shows "reading blogs" at the bottom of a list of 13 options. Nearly 60% of US Web users "never" look at blogs. However, at least 10% "frequently" or "occasionally" read Web logs, according to a report of the poll by Editor and Publisher editorandpublisher. Is the apparent lack of interest slowing the blog boom? Not according to the founder of Technorati.com, Dave Sifry. His Web log service is apparently seeing 75,000 new blogs a day. "Technorati currently tracks 27.2 million Web logs, and the blogosphere we track continues to double about every 5.5 months." However, he reckons as many as 9% of new blogs to be spam or in some way bogus rather than useful content. Bloggers are writing 50,000 messages each hour, according to Sifry. Spikes in posting volume have accompanied major news events. "It is literally impossible to read everything that is relevant to an issue or subject," wrote Sifry on his blog. "A new challenge has presented itself - how to make sense out of this monstrous conversation, and to find the most interesting and authoritative information out there."technorati

No threat to mainstream media. Not from blogs at least.

Commenting on the Gallup Poll survey, Mystery Pollster confesses to never believing in "blogger triumphalism" or "the notion that blogs will inexorably destroy or supplant the 'mainstream media'."mysterypollster.The blogger furthers his argument by pointing out that "… the collective reach of blogs is nowhere near that of television or print media, but focusing on the relatively small percentages misses the rapidly growing influence of the blog readership in absolute terms. The 12% that say they read political blogs at least a few times a month amount to roughly 26 million Americans." Point rather well taken, I feel. Larry Bodine also points out that "…according to the Nielsen ratings, daily newspaper readership has declined from a high in 1964 of 80.8% of adults to today's current low of 52.8%. …also … 67.4% of all daily newspaper readers today are over 55. So, with paper news on the decline, where are people turning for info? Right. To the web. And as Kevin pointed out in a recent listserv post, most people don't even realize it when they're getting info from a blog; to them, it looks like a web site. The distinction between 'site' and 'blog' is lost on the average surfer because, well... there's not much of a distinction". legalmarketing.

Where's mummy? Working at the call centre, Abdul.

Where's "the next high-tech offshore outsourcing hotspot for European and US multinationals looking for cheaper call centre and IT locations" - "the 12th hottest place for offshore outsourcing" in the opinion of AT Kearney? In the Land of the Pharaohs, mummies and pyramids. "The country aims to compete with near-shore eastern European and far-shore southeast Asian destinations but will also have to fend off stiff competition from the likes of South Africa and closer neighbours such as Morocco which are also gearing up to try and grab a piece of the lucrative offshore outsourcing market," writes Andy McCue ('Photos: Egypt follows Bangalore's offshore lead'). P.S.: Datamonitor expects Egypt's currently tiny share of the market to grow by 52 per cent in 2006 alone.services.silicon

The participation age. What's that?

"In the participation age, distinctions fade between creating and consuming, reading and writing, applications and mash-ups, centralised and distributed content. The world just looks different. We need a new breed of tools and services that will facilitate easy, fun and social content creation," promises Hans-Peter Brøndmo ('The Read-Write Web'). Also: "The participation age has been sneaking up on us in many guises for quite some time. The 'read-write Web' is the next big leap in functionality. Not only will it make it easier for people to participate in the continuous contributions that are the World Wide Web, but it will actually change the way we look at the Web as a medium." Finally: "The read-write Web is geek-speak for a way to use the Web in which you both read and write using the same applications. Wikis are examples of the read-write Web. Wikipedia is perhaps the most successful of them all. Millions of readers, thousands of writers. Anyone can write or edit an article on Wikipedia. It's like one giant, social, living repository of documents containing incredible amounts of user-generated knowledge and information."clickz.

Those of you who can't quite figure out what all the fuss is about the'Prophet Cartoons', the Washington Post Foreign Service article ('E-Mail, Blogs, Text Messages Propel Anger Over Images: In Hours, Rumors in Denmark Galvanize Opinion Elsewhere') is worth your serious perusal.washingtonpost

That's all for now though there's plenty more out there. Join me again next week, same place.

Copyright (c) 2001- 2006 by Deepak Mankar. All rights reserved. Deepak Mankar, an advertising practitioner on the creative side since 1965, is also intensely passionate about the web and web content creation. Read his online articles at asiaondemand.com. Website: http://www.addgandhi.com/original/. You may e-mail him at dmankar@bom8.vsnl.net.in.