Except for the occasional traffic report, I’ve pretty much given up on local commercial radio. Instead my drive time is accompanied by sounds from my iPod, including a variety of podcasts.
Every Monday that includes On the Media, a public radio program that looks at all forms of media, how they’re changing, and how media affect us. Certainly some of the best information I get all week.
One segment from this week’s show is a very interesting interview with a media analyst who discusses how the recording industry is exhibiting some of the same behavior of a terminally ill human.
Josh Bernoff is a media analyst for Forrester Research who’s been tracking the industry for six years. He says the music industry has responded to its condition in a manner more human than corporate. In fact, he sees a reaction similar to the one psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross famously observed in patients facing a terminal illness: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance. Bernoff admits he’s not the first to discern this pattern, which he says runs through the media business. But he saw the music business enter the first stage back in 1999.
He goes on to note that other "old" media industries like motion pictures and newspapers, are showing signs of entering different stages of the same death march.
As a side note, the program’s web site is one that big media companies could take lessons from. You can subscribe to the podcast, download individual segments or the whole show, read transcripts, search five years worth of archives and leave comments, all in a clean, easy to use interface.
The program is worth an hour of your time. When combined with the web site, OTM is also far more worthy of a contribution than the stuff they push during "pledge" drives on local public radio/TV.