I have to admit I’m a bit at a loss to make such predictions, as there doesn’t appear to be a lot of positivity coming out of the U.S. economy these days. But in the interest of keeping things happy for the holidays, here are my thoughts.
We will be okay. Democracy will survive. Journalism will survive.
The news industry will slowly figure out its future – 2009 will be a turning point. I think the next generation of journalists will be among those figuring out the economics of publishing in an era of “free” on the Internet.
They won’t be so interested in the walls between journalists and bloggers, for instance, but will seize on the ideas bloggers and social network folks bring to the table and use those in their journalism shops. There’s already a growing population of these folks out there working in traditional newspaper and TV and radio outlets.
Maybe some of those outlets will disappear, but in their place will grow a different cadre of journalists – some through representative journalism or spot.us or any of the other efforts being made to start new initiatives. That will be painful, but work out in the long run.
But the reason I think 2009 will be a turning point is because higher-level editors and publishing types will begin to listen much more acutely, and implement some of these ideas, because they will have to in order to ensure the survival of their businesses.
Maybe that’s not a prediction, but more of a prayer.
Have a happy holiday season.