December 28, 2008 6:50 PM
It’s said this is the time of the year when wishes come true. Here are mine for the coming year:
5. Networks continue to experiment and drive Web TV. The convergence of the broadcast television and Internet platforms are a "when," not an "if." It’s early, but the conditions make it a smart play if done well. Success or failure is all in user adoption. Look to what people who own Internet companies do and say, no one else—no “experts,” print journalists-turned-media experts, etc. Companies struggle with creating passionate traffic more from lack of understanding and approach than from it necessarily being hard to do.
4. More integration of Internet people into digital entertainment. A successful transition with the Internet platform and continued success in its traditional markets benefits all who work in the entertainment business. I think the key to success with this is for the industry to work with more Internet people in digital efforts versus with staffing entertainment veterans alone. It’s a matter of Google and XYZ Web startup on the resume, versus just experience on the entertainment side. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have people from the entertainment side, but a mix of both.
3. More parties and mixers. Where are the A-list entertainment industry events and mixers? I know of a few, but it’s nothing compared to the collaboration, meet-ups, parties and social gatherings that are always going on in Internet business. It’s less frequent at the C/executive level, but of the things I attend, it always seems to work. People make connections, share ideas and form relationships that can carry companies further ahead. I think it’s good for all business.
2. Trim the fat. All the layers! I understand that productions are big, complicated projects. It’s literally like setting up a carnival. But I’m not convinced all the processes I’ve seen on the business side are necessary. I’m not sure entirely yet, but as I work more and more in the industry, it seems things could be streamlined. As the market continues to be disrupted by the Internet, I wonder if organically it might.
1. Take risks. I know it’s harder to do this in entertainment than it is online, but not taking risks can be as detrimental as failing at something you try. Of all the industries I’ve worked in, entertainment and television by far has the most reach, capabilities and money, and I’m sure that’s in part because of its risk-averse approach. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it always works. Tons of people I know complain about a lack of creativity in Hollywood. Taking a risk is tough, but the benefits are there.