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Fast-Moving Media Industry? January 20, 2005

Posted by David Card in Uncategorized.

In a predictable but otherwise entertaining article on the future media mogul line-up (what, no Steve Jobs?), USA Today reports this specious quote from NBC Universal CEO Bob Wright, who should know better:

“The exciting part about the media business is that things can happen quickly, because you’re not dependent on bricks and mortar.”

What hooey. The media industry moves slower than many (technology, financial services, pharma, even retail) because of the following:

– Deals. Everyone owns a piece of everything (and a piece of each other), and talent contracts always reflect their predecessors.

– Consumer behavior. Fans are fickle, but they take a long time to make fundamental behavioral changes.

– Advertising. If anything’s slower to change than media, it’s the advertising industry.

And, like baseball managers, nobody ever really gets fired, they just move on to another team.

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