From left: Dezenhall, Klein, Edgecliff-Johnson, Heyward and Zier talk the future of media
Another day, another panel talking about why the media is in crisis and what can be done to fix it.
Today’s panel at the Samsung Experience in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle hosted by Gotham Media Ventures — called “Media in Crisis: Is There A Way Out? — brought us no closer to a solution, but was more focused on particular problems and solutions than some of the other panels we have been to recently.
Moderated by Eric Dezenhall, founder of crisis management firm Dezenhall Resources, the panel included Financial Times Media Editor Andrew Edgecliff-Johnson, Newspaper National Network CEO Jason Klein, Air America CEO Bennett Zier and Andrew Heyward, senior advisor at MarketSpace LLC and former president of CBS News.
The panelists focused in on the main problems that are plaguing journalism today: the changing advertising market, media bias versus niche markets and rapidly changing technology.
Bias and emerging niche markets particularly fascinated the panelists, who all agreed that there is a future for niche publications — although they mourned the loss of unbiased news coverage and local reporting of large local newspapers.
“News has become a spectator sport,” Zier said, noting that every outlet strives to be the “est” — as in “youngest, oldest, blackest, hippest.” And that’s not a bad thing. “There is so much noise right now, you absolutely have to differentiate yourself,” he added.