Our changing digital landscape

Our changing digital landscape

This last week or two I have been reminded of my past, and have been thinking about my friends and colleagues at the ABC who are going through a very stressful time.

The esteemed Executive Producer Patricia Barraclough has been at the ABC for many years; she conceived ‘Australian Story’ and has mentored countless young journalists (including me) on the value of good story telling. Her wise words and expertise has sent many of us on a path to success.

Her best advice – Be honest, real and listen hard!

It’s a tough time for all…

It’s also a time to reflect on the massive changes that are taking place in the world of storytelling.

ABC Managing Director Mark Scott has said “we regard the changes as vital to securing the long-term health of the organisation.”

This was backed up by the ABC Board who released the following statement:

“The initiatives outlined by Mr Scott comprise a carefully considered response to the twin challenges of technological change and reduced funding. They provide funds to invest in essential new online and mobile strategies that better connect the ABC with its audiences.”

“Like the best media companies across the globe, the ABC is using its digital expertise to achieve deeper and broader audience engagement and relevance.”

Bring it on!

The renewed attention on the digital landscape confirms there’s now a much greater focus on the audience, and this is because the audience are now in complete control of what, how and when they ingest their content.

Further evidence came last week with the announcement that Netflix will launch in Australia next March.

This will open up a whole new range of service delivery platforms that will include subscription video on demand (SVOD) platforms – like Netflix and Stan, and ad-supported video on demand (AVOD) like Quickflix and Presto.

Exciting times ahead for those of us who ingest our media from our mobile and tablet devices, and this will give us even more choices to watch and listen as we please.

Last week my partner and I drove back to Canberra from Newcastle and listened to selected interviews from the ABC Radio Series – Conversations with Richard Fidler. We selected our content from hundreds of stories, basing our selection on who we wanted to know more about.

Pure selective bliss!

And no outside influences to help us determine our content.

The ABC has always been our superior storyteller

Maybe I’m biased, but for me the ABC has always been our superior storyteller, and their ability to reach audiences and tell stories in regional and remote locations is well proven and hugely respected.

That responsibility must continue, and great storytellers like Patricia Barraclough and other mentors must be retained to teach the art of storytelling to our younger generations.

The next step is then how those stories are distributed… and that’s a whole other challenge our media players must now consider in this ridiculously exciting digital age that we now live in.

More stories, more platforms = more competition.

And the ultimate winner is you and I – the consumers of all things digital!

Photo: Broken Simulacra

Each week a staff member puts pen to paper to write about an aspect of content communication that speaks to them, and hopefully, informs you. This is a space where our passion for writing, learning and sharing information comes to shine.

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