Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Google v. Murdoch

Our Republic and its press will rise or fall together.
-Joseph Pulitzer

I recently listened to a WBUR On Point podcast called Google vs. Murdoch.

While Murdoch and Google's back and forth was discussed (Murdoch recently said he was going to erect a pay wall around his content and disallow Google to index it), the majority of the conversation was about journalism's failing business model in the face of Internet technologies.

It was an interesting conversation to consider against the conceptual backdrops of thinkers like Clay Shirky and the authors of The Cluetrain Manifesto.

The issues discussed got to the heart of the issue: human behavior is shifting and so are the business models that were previously supported by those behaviors.

An interesting glimpse into just how destructive the Internet has been to the dacades-old business model of newspapers, the podcast was a good glimpse into the range of ideas about journalism after the collapse of newspapers.

In the face of newspaper's financial hardships, Schumpeter's Creative Destruction is a useful conceptual framework.

Schumpeter saw Creative Destruction as "process of industrial mutation that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one."

In the case of journalism, it appears that newspapers and the means of production that supported them aer being destroyed as a new means of production is being created.

It will be interesting to see what comes of attempts to imprint the same content-driven industrial business model onto the networked, information economy.

1 comment: