The Idea Dude


Monday, October 23, 2006

Net reality, where are your eyeballs?

I had an interesting discussion with a veteran advertising executive last week. His catch phrase was, "the most watched TV program today is the Internet at 17% viewership between 7pm-11pm". While we both recognized that the Internet consists of essentially infinite channels, it was nevertheless telling that a substantial chunk of what was thought to be prime time television is steadily being eroded. Even on television, the hunger for reality TV seems insatiable regardless of whether you were watching the Food Channel, the Home Channel, Discovery or one of the major networks. Shows like Survivor and Fear factor were just the beginning. Perhaps it is just plain cheaper to film ordinary people in ordinary or extraordinary situations but I think there is a real trend towards watching reality TV...which is perhaps why this generation is seeking their entertainment on the 'Net.

So what is more real than YouTube, blogs, MySpace, flickr and the like. Or participating in multiplayer games like Counterstrike, Battlefield 2142. My kids hardly send email. It's all instant messenging these days. Even your instant messaging title is no longer a staid title but is a mood reflector. Rather than send an email to her friends, my daughter elected to change her IM title for the day to "I'm out, call me after 3pm". How's that for innovation from a pre-teen. I guess my point about the Internet today is that it is an experiential environment that people can be voyeurs or more often participants ad hoc unscripted conversations. Despite what people are saying about the worth or usefulness of MySpace, we would be naive to ignore how today's generation and tomorrow's generation is using the Internet.

I left the meeting with my advertising friend with a strong conviction that even the blogosphere will be transformed in the next 2 - 3 years beyond what it is today. Your blog will become your space where people want to hang out and chat, comment, contribute, pretty much like a typical MySpace profile. The excitement that followed is that while TheGoodBlogs was a great service to all bloggers, we were only scratching the surface of what was achievable. The analogy here would be that most content portals are like movie theatres, inviting patrons to visit because of great content. TheGoodBlogs is more like your television set inviting your friends and readers to find information/enlightenment/entertainment on your blog and to hang out in your house.


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