Posts Tagged 'Innovation'

Technology, Media and Celebs Meet at Rosh Pina Festival

A gathering of international speakers from US and European media industry, startups, technology companies, interactive agencies, investors, TV stars and executives is taking place in Rosh Pina, Israel, on 5th-8th of November.

In the last 8 years, Rosh Pina Festival was all about the TV industry, positioning itself as the place to be for executives, creators and business people.

This year, Ami Giniger, head of Taya Media Group, the main organizer of the event, decided to extend the festival to digital media – and cover the effects of technology on the international media market. As a part of this change, Yossi Vardi became co-chair of the event.

Therefore, I was thrilled when asked by Taya to be the principal organizer of the digital track. For me, it is like being a kid in a candy store – creating an international conference in the topic I am so passionate about. Though require a lot of heavy lifting (and if you follow my twitter you know that), it is an exciting role, and I am happy to say that we are going to have an amazing event, with speakers from the local, US and European media and digital industry, research companies, and a lot of innovation and startups. And, yes, a lot of TV starts and celebs (let’s face it, geeks are cool, celebs are…. at least as cool…)

Some of the speakers are well known in the Internet TV circles – we managed to get Mike Hudak from blip.tv out of his lavish NYC offices to the stages of Rosh Pina, as well as Robert Millis. Jeff Pulver will talk about disruption in the media industry. But that’s not all. IDC Research will present NBC’s Internet strategy, ESPN will present its multi-platform activities, H3G will present mobile TV case studies,Newtek‘s CEO, Jim Plant, will discuss live broadcasting,  and we are expecting some exciting presentations from Microsoft.

We decided to add a lot of innovation to the event. Therefore, after every panel, we will present a startup that is changing the media landscape. This angle makes the event the place to be for startups, investors and VCs.

Please email me for more information (kfir@pravdam.com). If you are interested in blogging about it, let me know, and please tag all relevant content with the following tag: Roshpinafestival08

Feel free to join our Facebook group as well. 

Stay tuned for more info about panels, speakers and cooperation opportunities.

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Innovation in News – A Top Down Approach

Inform, Educate, Entertain... Expose?Image by inju via Flickr

We all know that the news industry is highly affected by technology – starting with the rise of bloggers as a news source, through the usage of UGC in mainstream news reporting, the reduction of cost of live broadcasting, the introduction of video to newspapers websites, collaborative news gathering, and the usage of social media tools to notify readers and create discussions around news items.

However, how can one evaluate the level of innovation of a news organization? Here are some of our thoughts:

1. Release of hot off the press news through the day, without limiting hot items to a specific news hour or editionTV news organizations expanding to the internet face a challenge – should they compromise the rating of their main edition by releasing hot items on the internet first? The same goes for newspapers and radio. This is a case of innovation – the internet strong point is the fact that news can be dispatched instantaneously 24×7, while traditional media is all about creating and maintaining viewership and readership peaks.

2. Creation of direct to web video news clips – today the cost of a video journalist is much lower than in the past. Newspaper websites already have in some areas video journalists – a role traditionally exisitng in the TV business only. Online news consumers do not divide media based on it sources (such as TV, papers and radio), but based on the information itself.

3. One news desk,  many platforms – while in traditional media, a newspaper has its own platform and news desk, one will think that news innovation should integrate all the platforms and create a unified desk per topic. So, for example, a desk covering the Pallin affair would be a stand alone operation in a newspaper, while others will focus on getting the best information, and “repurpose” it to the relevant platform.

4. Social media as a part of a news gathering game – does a news outlet use social networks and blogs as source of information?

5. Social media as a part of a distribution strategy – does a news outlet use social networks (such as Facebook and Twitter) and blogs as a distribution platform?

6. Audience interaction – does a news outlet interact with viewers, through its own site, as well as social networks?

7. Distributed approach – does a news outlet allow others to embed its content in their sites, social networks profiles and so on?

How does your news room operate? What are the challenges you are facing? what is the role of innovation in the success of news organizations, and how do they evaluate it?

(written in collaboration with Lara Greenberg, former South African journalist and current student of the School of Communications at IDC Herzliya).

How Much Interactivity Do We Really Need?

When I ask people about cinema, technology, or Internet TV, I hear a lot of references to the possibilities of viewers’ interactivity. I’ve met creators and tech enthusiasts who told me with sparkling eyes that now they can truly interact with their viewers. They can even let viewers decide what will happen next!

Well, open and honest, I don’t want to affect the plot. Not at all.

I watch TV, films, and Internet TV in order to be entertained. I want someone to create a world for me – a believable world that I can relate to. I have no problem with different ways that creators increase my involvement with what I see on screen. Great soundtrack, as well as less conservative methods to create a world, are fine by me.

But, please, don’t ask me to decide what the character will do next. Don’t ask me to decide if it will turn right or left. Not only it doesn’t increase my involvement, it reduces my suspension of disbelief.

Having said that, there are many ways that technology can make me live the story I see on the screen. Check out Lance Weiler work in this field – fascinating and innovative ideas come to life in his creation, surrounding viewers with multi-layered experience.

Letting me decide how the plot will evolve is feasible. I just don’t believe it is needed.

How do YOU feel about the idea of viewers’ controlled plot?

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