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What is the future of new media?

I kept myself on a self-imposed non disclosure agreement until the news broke out. that Duncan Riley has left the (b5media) building. There were several signs that Duncan had left b5media before the announcement was made public. The most obvious one was that someone pointed out how his blog was no longer in the b5media channel blogroll. Even the interview with 1938 media with Duncan leaves us all wanting for more info as to where Duncan is off to.

It is sad to say goodbye to someone you’ve never actually met in person. In a private email exchange with Duncan after his departure from b5media, I thanked the guy tremendously for being my ticket to the professional blogging industry. I also found out from him that I was the very first blogger for b5media, when some others had come from Weblog Empire. How about that?

With Duncan Riley leaving b5media and Jason Calacanis leaving AOL, I ask myself what the future is for online media companies – blog networks included. Not that they won’t become profitable in the future, mind you. I’m just saying that if the newspaper folk are worried about the “death of print” then what should online media groups worry about?

b5media planning.jpg
b5media planning session with Darren , Mark and Jeremy with their b5 caps and jackets

This is the reason why most traditional print companies are now putting their content online. Does this mean that new media companies should be making magazines then (take the MySpace magazine thing)?

If we are to look at overhead costs, traditional media is at a disadvantage here because the cost of having an editorial staff, circulation logistics, a sales team, events and printing costs overshadow online media – that basically just has to pay writers, host and maintain a database and pay domains. But then again,. Internet-based media is accessible for free over the Internet. And this actually is a double edged sword when you ask yourself what type of people go online for hours and hours to read stuff off the computer monitor? The answer: a whole lot – but this does not account for everybody else who’d rather read a magazine while swaying on a rocking chair.

Personally, there is only one magazine that has become successful in implementing a synergy between traditional media and new media – that would be Ziff Davis’ PC Magazine because they complement bi-monthly issues with value added features such as John Dvorak’s Cranky Geeks show and the PC Mag radio show. Also, PC Magazine builds on its branding by having other sites affiliate with them to help aggregate content.

Is the future of new media traditional media?

By Jayvee Fernandez

Jayvee Fernandez is a tech enthusiast, EAN certified SCUBA Diver and underwater photographer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. His photos and videos have appeared in various international and local publications including Random House Germany, Discovery Channel Canada, and CNN.

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