Boy, how digital are you?

Tom posted a recent conversation with his parents:

Parents: have you seen that annoying commercial on the television?

me: I haven’t seen a commercial on the television in a few years (downloaded tv doesn’t have commercials)

well what about the radio commercial?

I don’t listen to commercial radio (just CBC and/or podcasts)

So what else do you listen to when you drive, just CDs?

I don’t own any CDs (switched to exclusively mp3, vinyl years ago)

So you just plug in your iPod when you’re driving?

Oh, I don’t drive anywhere (except in summer. To get where I need to go I take bikes, taxis, transit or airplanes not my own car)

parents: [no small skepticism] hmmm

Do you get the feeling the world is changing. Do you get the feeling that it’s not yet affecting everyone equally? am I an oddity or the prototypical future consumer? (I suppose I could be more-than-a-little of both)

Among my peer group, there is definitely a strong move away from traditional broadcast media. They are a new generation of Richard Florida’s “creative class”, who want their content when they want it in the form they want it. Ryan’s got a nice HDTV over-the-air tuner USB device which plugs into the new 24″ iMac beautifully. PVR functionality without paying Rogers $100/month.

The television business model is going into a challenging period. NBC has been talking about getting away from scripted TV for the 8:00 primetime slot, because they’re just too expensive and advertiser interest is waning.

Meanwhile, audience tastes are rapidly evolving. Shows like Lost, Weeds, Dexter and Battlestar Galactica are demonstrating an increased intensity in their relationship with the audience. Writers have been able to tap into that relationship to maintain dramatic intensity and complex story arcs that evolve over multiple seasons, gaining significant incremental revenues from DVD sales and iTunes episodes. In this new model, the creative content becomes all the more critical to success. Old style attempts to define and target mass market appeal through focus-grouped crap will become less sustainable, at least for scripted television.

I’m looking forward to HD quality downloads paid for by subscription.  That would be an innovation that I’d pay for.

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