As a media professional of nearly 25 years, it is especially wonderful that media is now in the forefront of this technology boom. The new media really is the new technology--a concept that sounds strange at first but I think you will begin to see what I mean over the next year or so.
I've been reporting on developments in Silicon Valley since 1984. I've gone out with my notebook and peeked over other people's shoulders and said "that looks interesting, tell me what you are doing." Now others, not just reporters come and tap me on my shoulder and say "That looks interesting, tell me what you are doing."
Part of what I'm doing is trying to figure out if it is possible to make a living in the new media, it is a search for creating viable business models for the new media. And everybody that takes part in such a quest benefits all content creators--because new media business models are not a proprietary type of thing.
Media businesses are by their very nature very transparent organizations.
A newspaper for example, reveals its clients all the time--you can see who is advertising. You can see the price of the newspaper, and the newspaper's media kit will reveal the reader numbers, the price of an advertisement, the reader demographics, a breakdown of the distribution channels, and much more.
For example, you can easily figure out the operating costs of a newspaper because newsprint, publication and other costs of business are easily discovered. If a newspaper is owned by a public company, the public quarterly reports will yield plenty of additional information.
And this same approach can be applied to the analysis of all other media businesses, making them all very transparent.
And that is why I think that an open-source open-sharing type approach to business development in the new media space is not only effective, but ultimately unavoidable.
The payback for a more open sharing of business ideas will be that there will be first-mover type benefits. I know that this sounds contradictory, that the more open sharing of business models will benefit all entrepreneurs developing new media, and new media technologies such as blogs, wikis, collaborative platforms.
Traditionally, business ideas tend to be kept secret and bound up for years, under non-disclosure agreements, etc.
But that assumes that anybody could take that business idea and execute it. We know very well, from long years of building companies in Silicon Valley, that the value is in the execution of a business idea.
The bottleneck in Silicon Valley is not capital, or ideas. It is the limited numbers of teams that have the ability execute successfully.
Therefore, those people and organizations working in the front-lines of the new media sector should be best placed to see where the new business opportunities will turn up. And they should be the best equipped in terms of knowledge, experience, and most importantly, people--to build the new media businesses of the early 21st century.