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Dynamic Media In Transition

A Report on Best Practices in Business Communications By Richard Van
A Philosophical Perspective

It's all about solutions. Technology is a tool. The medium is not the message. Whether a program is distributed on videotape, via satellite, on a DVD or streamed over an accommodating Intranet, content rules. Yes, some early adapters and media geeks will watch just about anything that demonstrates a bleeding edge technology, but, in the final analysis, media works only if it provides a solution to a problem. It may come as a surprise to some of our readers, but print is also a proven solution. You see, in order to solve a problem the communications must be accessible. If nothing else, print is certainly accessible.

Gerard Gibbons, M.D, president of Visual Eyes, Inc., a very successful Woodland Hills, CA production company, characterizes himself as a "Platform agnostic." "Digital media," he says, "is only the package for different flavors of content." This book looks at all the flavors to help our readers identify trends and critical success factors for applying a rich panoply of media to achieve solutions.

We've chosen to use the term "media services" both to identify the various creative and technical media functions such as producing videotapes or duplicating slides and the organizations that create the media in the corporate, non-profit private and governmental sectors and the production community. Media services can be provided by internal departments or by outside vendors, both large and small. Media Services can range from desktop publishing newsletters to producing multi-million dollar motion pictures or sales conferences. The professionals who provide the services include writers, directors, designers, videographers, grips, managers, account representatives in short everyone who is connected with the concept, design, creation, distribution and management of communications media.

The intention in researching and writing this book was to provide a long overdue update on the state of the industry. While trade publications have filled the gap with articles about certain aspects of the industry, the last broad-brush studies were the private television reports produced by Judith and Douglas Brush, the most recent of which appeared in 1988. The key research is from an on-line survey conducted by AVVideo Multimedia Producer magazine in June, 2000.

A lot has changed since then, most notably the trend toward convergence. The confluence of media suggests that it is no longer appropriate to segregate or narrow the area of research. Instead we felt it essential to look at all media, including print. This broadening of the scope of the study is reinforced by an increasing tendency toward consolidation of media production functions, particularly in internal or in-house media services groups and what we see as the beginning of a trend toward full media integration.

This report also provides some actionable and statistical benchmarks against which media services professionals can measure themselves and their organizations. This report is intended to serve as a practical strategic planning guide a reference handbook to which the media professional can refer for insights and guidance on the state of the industry and his or her own future direction.

This report culiminates in a pair of New Media Services Models. These models, one for corporate and nonprofit in-house departments and the other for production companies, derive from what our research points to as the benchmarks for the effective media developers and media services organizations of the future.

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Related Keywords:business, corporate, media, research, survey, dvd, web, video, film, production


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