Tuesday, 10 May 2011
User behavior shaping how digital media is consumed and delivered
The way we consume content now has changed drastically over the 20 years since the Web became available for the general public. Already during the Persian Gulf War reporters were using ICQ to provide news organizations with updated information on the situation there and this sharing of information online has now become the norm.
The pace that we consume information now has increased to the extent where news organizations are so scared of loosing the scoop on a particular piece of news that they will rather tweet about it before they’ve got an article with more information together. An example of this was done by a Minneapolis / St. Paul TV station WCCO that tweeted about the two-year deal NFL player Bret Favre had signed with the Minnesota Vikings. After tweeting about the news a few times they had the actual news on their site and WCCO had become a trending topic in Twitter. The TV stations website got over 100,000 page views within the first hour of the news being tweeted, compared to the usual level of the site averaging at about 30,000.
The power of social sharing has been also in the news with the recent revolutions in the Middle East and Africa, where Twitter and Facebook have been deemed as some of the tools used by the revolutionists to organize their demonstrations and report news to the outside world.
It’s all about being able to provide people with the most recent news through the mediums they prefer. Traditional news organizations can’t expect people to come to their sites to search through the entire site like was done with traditional newspapers. People get their news from variety of different sources besides news sites. Twitter, Facebook, link aggregators and RSS feeds play larger parts in the way people want to receive the news.
It is impossible to say with certainty how the content publishing industry will look like during the upcoming years but it is certain that we, the consumers, will have a much larger say in it.