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Web 2.0 Expo: Transforming The Media

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Static online reprints of newspaper and magazine articles is so ten years ago. Interactivity and networking are the big factors now, as people want to leave their mark in comments on the stories of today.

Web 2.0 Expo: Transforming The Media
How Has Web 2.0 Changed Our Interaction?

Reading a story online doesn’t just motivate people to write a letter to the editor anymore. People want the instant gratification of comments, and the knowledge that other readers, and very likely the writers and editors, have seen what the people have to say.

Topix CEO Rich Skrenta said during a session at the O’Reilly Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco: ""The Internet isn’t taking over for everything it’s destroying. The Internet is replacing it with something else."

He said the Internet isn’t as effective for localized information, and cited the role small town newspaper publishers play. Web 2.0 follows the audience, and the bigger stories.

(It’s interesting to find this coming from Rich Skrenta, since the whole point of the recent Topix relaunch was to adopt a hyperlocal focus, with local editors signing up and taking a role. – David)

TechMeme founder Gabe Rivera said the way things are structured now allows the promotion of content stars.

Their work steals readers away from traditional media, which needs to figure out how to either acquire these stars or develop them.

The roles of publishers seem to be changing. Ted Shelton, whose Personal Bee site was just purchased by Technorati, said of that redefining definition: "Publishers will be less and less about the creation of content and more about the curation of content – the collection and aggregation of content."

If publishers could do this in the print world, they could offer more benefit to those readers.

Advertising revenue remains the touchstone concern in media.

Skrenta called Google "a great place to start" with ad displays and tracking, while Shelton suggested just how Google could be an even greater ad power in online media:

"If you narrow the advertising world down to reaching someone looking to buy something, then Google is certainly the 800lb gorilla," he said. "What Google hasn’t figured out is how to provide branding. (Branding) is where there is the largest opportunity for innovation."

Web 2.0 Expo: Transforming The Media
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