Old media is in trouble, there’s no doubt about it. Newspapers are closing, magazines are getting thinner and thinner, even local television news stations are in decline.
But what about new media? Are YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, et al., in any better shape?
Not that I can see.
According to a recent AdAge article, Credit Suisse has reported YouTube’s estimated 2009 losses “at nearly half a billion dollars – thanks to ever-escalating bandwidth costs and nowhere near enough advertising support to pay the bills,” leaving the author to conclude that Google (owner of YouTube) can’t afford more Susan Boyles!
Regarding Twitter, is their exponential growth celebratory or has it metastasized? How will tweets survive when escalating costs on zero revenue is unsustainable over time?
And what about Mark Zuckerberg’s melting valuation? Facebook has experimented with several business models, and yet there is still no sustainable revenue and no IPO in sight.
Which is worse: the shifting sands of failure eroding Old Media or the overheated success melting New Media?
Seems to me that all media must transform, that nothing is inevitable at this point, and that time is running out. For both sides.