Internet experts say
media to change most


An analysis of survey data gathered in a study of the attitudes of nearly 1,300 technology experts, pundits and scholars projects that the media is the institution expected to change the most due to Internet influences over the next decade.

The Elon University School of Communications/Pew Internet & American Life Project Experts Survey provides an overall vision of a networked, digital future that enhances many people's lives, but also has some extremely distressing implications in regard to privacy and security. The group invited to take the survey included many scientists and engineers who created the first Internet architecture a decade ago, along with current technology leaders, consultants and researchers from corporations, media, government and higher education.

Among the respondents were people affiliated with IBM, AOL, Microsoft, Intel, Google, Internet2 and Oracle; Harvard, MIT and Yale; and the Federal Communications Commission, FBI, U.S. Census Bureau, Social Security Administration and U.S. Department of State.

Statistical results in regard to questions about the media and entertainment:

- When these experts and scholars were asked to rate the institutions that are most likely to change dramatically over the next decade, news organizations and publishing received the highest score, an 8.46 on a scale from 1-10 followed by education (7.98), the workplace (7.84), medicine/healthcare (7.63), politics/government (7.39), music/film/the arts (7.18), international relations (6.74), military (6.53), families (6.24), neighborhoods/communities (6.16), religion (4.69). More direct quotes in response to this question can be found at

- In addition, 53% of the experts agreed with this statement: "By 2014, all media, including audio, video, print, and voice, will stream in and out of the home or office via the internet. Computers that coordinate and control video games, audio, and video will become the centerpiece of the living room and will link to networked devices around the household, replacing the television's central place in the home." You can find direct quotes related to this question at

- And 50% of the experts agreed with the following statement: "In 2014, it will still be the case that the vast majority of internet users will easily be able to copy and distribute digital products freely through anonymous peer-to-peer networks." You can find direct quotes related to this question at

One expert wrote, "The most obvious effects on news media are the rise of weblogs supplanting the public's attentions to traditional news media, and the slow death of newspapers due to erosion of mindshare by online influences such as news Web sites, chat rooms, message boards and online gaming."

James Brancheau, a vice president at GartnerG2 who analyzes the media industry, wrote, "Connections across media, entertainment, advertising, and commerce will become stronger with future margins going to a new breed of 'digital media titans.' These companies may not come from the traditional value chain, they will be far more aggressive than existing players. The incumbents are not moving fast enough. Well-branded innovators such as Google and Starbucks have a chance to build all-new new distribution models tied to ad revenue and retail sales."

Gary Bachula, a technology development leader, most recently at Internet2, wrote, "Eventually, everything digitized in the world (movies, music, books, newspapers, etc.) will be available from the network through peer-to-peer-like networks. The net will become a giant TiVo, and will have every song, every movie, every TV show (from some point on), every sports game, every news broadcast ever created. People will obtain it over the net - and send it within their homes wirelessly to devices that are hybrids of what we call computers and televisions today."

More media-oriented quotes submitted by survey participants:

"The Internet has thrown open the floodgates for participatory news and information, allowing individuals to aggregate information from a broad range of sources, truthsquad what they collect, burrow deeper on topics of concern or interest, and take action on that information, if they so wish." - Jan Schaffer, Pulitzer winner and director of J-Lab, The Institute for Interactive Journalism

"The relationship between politics and media will continue to change and affect how people learn about and choose their leaders. The leveling of access to information will make some people remarkably well-informed and others remarkably misinformed, and unless we push to train young people in critical thinking skills this could become dangerous." - Cynthia Samuels, Center for American Progress

"Cultural infrastructure will change the most. Alternative media made possible by new technologies will continue to drive change in both the producing and distributing sectors of radio, TV, the recording industry and film." - Fred Hapgood, Output Ltd.

"Anything that has involved an intermediary will be changed. New kinds of intermediaries will emerge, but the old ones - especially in businesses that have created high margins by being in the middle of transactions - will find their very existences at risk." - Dan Gillmor, author of "We the Media" and former technology writer for the San Mercury-News

"One of the biggest changes the Net will bring in the next decade will be a new way of doing journalism, with media companies being watched by the producers of weblogs and citizen media trying to co-opt their efforts in some way. The Net is one of the last bastions of independent journalism, so media companies will try to dominate online while smaller players work the niches." - Mark Glaser, Online Journalism Review, Online Publishers Association

"The biggest changes, as always with new media, will be metaphorical. It's not that anything in particular that we do on the Internet is so important - it's that behaviors we have online can serve as models for behaviors that change in real life." - Douglas Rushkoff, author and NYU adjunct faculty member

"Television channels will be replaced by video blogs and Dan Rather will be dragged off the set." - (Predicted weeks BEFORE Rather announced his departure by) Bob Metcalfe, Polaris Venture Partners, Ethernet originator, 3Comm co-founder and former InfoWorld columnist

"News media, politics and governance promise to change the most thanks to the all-publishing, all-connecting nature of Internet communications. The most obvious effects on news media are the rise of weblogs supplanting the public's attentions to traditional news media, and the slow death of newspapers " - Mack Reed, Digital Government Research Center, USC

"The Internet has created information demand that traditional publishing technologies are not capable of meeting Search technology has changed the way information is presented and sorted. Editors have lost the control they traditionally wielded over the presentation and selection of news Some are predicting the rise of 'citizen journalism' provided by the man in the street using digital technology. I'm not sure most 'citizens' are that interested in being news providers and reporters, but one thing is very clear: the news is becoming interactive. It is no longer a one-way conversation." - Janice Castro, assistant dean, director, graduate journalism programs, Northwestern University

"It will change the job of every knowledge worker, because it will continue to make more knowledge more readily available." - Reid Ashe, CEO Media General Inc.

"The Internet will significantly impact the channels through which people around the world get news and information; existing powerful channels will diminish, and new online social networks will evolve and deliver news to people much more organically in the course of their daily lives. We are seeing the "Blogosphere" starting to impact traditional news channels in this fashion - becoming a catalyst for creating and driving the news, speeding up the news cycle, and delivering critical real-time news and information across millions of touch points." - Lyle Kantrovich, Internet usability expert, Cargill/also known for his blog Croc o' Lyle

"The Internet allows small units of thinking to access the larger public audience. Language and ethnic minorities political groupings like Greens or religious fundamentalists neighborhood political advocates distinct territories, and even individuals like the Baghdad bloggers or Matt Drudge, can publish and converse with the larger public. This will continue, despite efforts by the media companies to prevent it. There is too much momentum behind the decentralization movement already." - Mike Weisman, Seattle attorney and activist in the advocacy groups Reclaim the Media and Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility

"All institutions, all endeavors that rely on the exchange of information will feel the increasing impact of the Internet. The key is to separate the Internet from the World Wide Web. The Internet is truly the revolutionary delivery vehicle; the Web merely an early indication about how looking for information, finding information, publishing information, sharing information, selling information and even defining information will change in the future." - Howard I. Finberg, director, Interactive Learning, The Poynter Institute for Media Studies



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Last Modified:  2/26/05
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