SansBlogue  
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
 

What's next - future media ::

Christianity Today has an article “What’s Next: Publishing and Broadcasting”. (HT to Think Christian who posted snippets, and before that to Lingamish for noticing!)

Isn't it nice when the “mainstream media” deign to think about the future ;-)

Two items from the comments (on Think Christian) really struck me.

The first is daft, Donnell Duncan writes:

I have a website and I’m publishing a book soon. Even though it’s 2006, for at least another twenty years, I expect the influence of my book to extend just as far as my website.
Well no Donnell, unless your “book” is a fiction bestseller like Harry Potter or the Da Vinci Code, it's likely that a website will have far more impact.

Suppose your print book sells 1,000 copies (which at least in Biblical Studies would be strong sales) and 250 of those are to libraries. Suppose, what's more, that on average individual owners loan the book to three other people over the next twenty years, that would make 3,000 readers. Again let's assume that each library copy is read 100 times before falling to bits – 25,000 readers. Wow, that's nearly 30,000 readers over the twenty years :)

Now let's compare my Amos commentary, about 900 different IP addresses “visit” the material each day. Of course most of those are Google visitors who do not find what they want and move on, though since somebody looks at over 8,000 pages per day some visitors are reading quite a bit. If we assume one print page of your book is equivalent to 4 web pages from Amos that would be 2,000 pages of your book each day, if the book is 250 pages long that's 8 cover-to-cover readers daily, or nearly 3,000 per year. So on a conservative estimate (and every year so far readership of the online material has grown) the web “book” is about twice as influential as the print one ;-)

Dusty Bogard by contrast is a future focused commentator. He quotes Jonathan Schwartz, CEO Sun Microsystems:

I was in a European airport a few weeks ago, waiting in a lounge with about 100 other people – when I had to revise my world view. Most people had mobile handsets – we all would’ve predicted that. But no one was talking on their phone. They were all looking at them, and either browsing or text’ing or playing a game – but no one was making a voice call… Which only strengthens my belief that most people in the world will first experience the internet on their handset. Which means most businesses in the world trying to reach those consumers or leverage the internet should broaden their horizons.
Eeek, we need a .mobi domain and site optimised for WAP (and/or XHTML-MP - can anyone tell me which or how?) for the PodBible project, there's a whole bunch of potential listeners we have hardly started to supply. I'll register the domain, does anyone know someone who can turn an RSS podcast feed into a WAP or XHTML-MP site?

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