Is Big Media Failing To Adapt Because Of One-Sided Regulations?

from the declining-fortunes dept

It's been a favorite media pastime to speculate on why the AOL Time Warner merger was a huge bomb. One think-tank thinker, Adam Thierer of the Progress & Freedom Foundation, looks at the flop in a larger context and asks, whatever happened to the "big media monopoly" that everyone was concerned about and, more importantly, where are we heading? Of course, we all know now that the new media revolution passed the conglomerates by (and for the most part still has) -- they've failed to keep up with the "customization, personalization, choice, competition, and, above all, abundance," as Thierer puts it, that shapes the new world. Moreover, he argues that outdated FCC regulations, which apply only to traditional media, are hampering their transition to new media. Conversely, people and companies relying on new media are free from many of the existing restrictions and therefore have an unfair advantage over traditional types. Sounds good in theory, but more than any regulations, old media companies have hurt themselves worse by clinging to existing business models, trying to rig the system to fit those models, and forcing people to consume their products the way they (the companies) want them to be consumed. They could make the transition much easier on themselves -- outdated regulations or not -- by embracing new business models that cede more control to consumers, rather than the other way around.


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  1.  
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    Hannibal, Jun 20th, 2005 @ 4:28pm

    You have to be careful with TCS stories like this.

    TCS was exposed a while back as a political "astroturf" operation run by a right-wing hack. (Google Ars for "tech central station".) Not everything that's published on TCS is political propaganda, but a lot of it is. This story in particular is in line with TCS's obsessively anti-regulation, libertarian bent. You can also find similar stories on TCS decrying environmental regulations and the like.
    You'll notice that the article also links up an uncritical interview with an FEC commissioner who was busted for spreading anti-campaign-finance-reform FUD. The interviewer just lets this guy say all kinds of nutty (and untrue) stuff about McCain-Feingold, as long as it feeds the libertarian anti-campaign finance angle that TCS pushes.
    While we're at it, let's take a look at TCS's leanings: they're against environmental regulation, against smoking bans, against campaign finance reform, and against any kind of FCC restrictions on media mergers. What does that make them? It makes them corporate shills for Big Oil, Big Tobacco, Big Business, and Big Media. These guys are bought and sold.
    Again, not everyone who writes for them is a hack and/or corporate shill. But their editors are, and much of there content is.

     

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    Mike (profile), Jun 20th, 2005 @ 4:57pm

    Re: You have to be careful with TCS stories like t

    We're familiar with TCS's reputation. But, I'm confused... did Brett's writeup take the article at it's word? It certainly looks like he was pretty critical of the article on the basis of what was written -- not the basis of the site's reputation.

    To be honest, we're not too concerned about the reputation of the site on its own, but what's being said in the article we're discussing -- which is exactly what we did in this case.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 21st, 2005 @ 10:17am

    Re: You have to be careful with TCS stories like t

    Mike, we're just asking you to make sure that you never link to sites where people have the audacity to write things that we do not agree with. It should be obvious to everyone that it's not actually possible for somoene to dissagree with me unless they're being paid to do so.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous of Course, Jun 21st, 2005 @ 10:46am

    Re: You have to be careful with TCS stories like t

    Yeah! And the rest are paid off by big government, big labor, big environment, big health-care, big insurance... Ding! Did the warning bell go off when the trigger phrase was read?
    Just letting "nuts" speak their piece is called free speech. It's something to be promoted. Only listening to those you agree with is an unhealthy, incestuous, form of behavior.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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