Maintaining a Legacy of Trust in a Digital-first Media Industry - Part 1


Posted on: March 29, 2019 by Paul Moore Olmstead

In many ways, there’s no better illustration of ‘digital transformation’ than the change undergoing today’s media.

Media organisations are re-inventing their business models to adapt to the digital world. Consumer demands have evolved; viewers expect more relevant, personalised, on-demand and accessible content through the channels they use.

Outlets are also facing pressure from shifts in the media landscape. This includes the meteoric rise of over the top (OTT) platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime; the increase in the use of social media for media and news distribution; and the expansion of Youtube, vloggers, Instagram, and Facebook as viral media-sharing platforms.

These issues are particularly important for media outlets’ dealings with younger audiences. Millennials are both the biggest users of social media and the greatest practitioners of non-linear, online viewing and content sharing – and they tend to be less skeptical about content sources that appear in their feeds.

Media outlets are working hard to keep up with the evolving landscape, which means an increasing focus on user data. But with issues including privacy, security, and fake news, how organisations approach data will determine whether they can retain user trust in the digital-first landscape.

The transformation of the media industry

Data has become a driving force for media organisations, as they seek to keep up with their consumers. The collection, storage, and processing of consumer data are inherent to delivering intuitive user experience.

Meanwhile, many established media organisations are using data to evolve their approach to online content distribution, as well as adopting new content formats. Outlets are combining editorial curation with a deeper understanding of audience preferences, in order to give their viewers the right content in the right context and at the right time.

Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are powering this data-driven approach and we now see automated highlights and transcription services impacting everyday media.

Ultimately, this will enable each organisation to flex its business model to meet its audiences’ needs.

But the same time, consumer trust and confidence as to the integrity and providence of content, and the appropriate management of their personal data is in the balance.

Greater opportunity, greater vulnerability

While data creates greater opportunities for media organisations, it also presents new and previously unseen security risks in many areas of their operations. Cybersecurity has a critical role to play in how media organisations use value-added data to drive their content scheduling and distribution, whilst maintaining trust with audiences.

Similarly, as media companies transform their production services through IP technologies and deliver them over the internet, new vulnerabilities threaten service availability and data privacy.

The move to the use of IP protocols in studios, control rooms, and other broadcast technology and infrastructure areas means media organisations are now being exposed to enterprise networks and their associated risks, often for the very first time.

All in all, the media industry is going through important technological and cultural change, both for the audience as well as the organisations.

This means there’s a need to adopt far more stringent security practices in order to uphold trust and compliance in an industry going through rapid change. But it’s also about engaging with users about how their data is used.

Go to Part 2 of the blog.

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About Paul Moore Olmstead
Director of Strategic Business Development for Global Media, Atos and member of the Scientific Community
Paul Moore Olmstead has been working in the area of innovation in the media market for over 15 years. He is based in London, UK and has dual Canadian/Spanish citizenship and degrees in Economics from the University of Toronto and Computer Business Systems at Ryerson University. Previously he spent many years on the BBC Account for Atos where he was responsible for Innovation and Sustainability and before that was the head of Media in Atos Research & Innovation. With over 25 years experience in IT, Paul has worked in wide variety of areas, including public procurement, accounting, mobility, Smart Cities, analytics and media. Paul has worked in such areas as video streaming, 3D, digital preservation, social media, video analytics and recommender systems. He has been collaborating as an external expert for the European Commission for over 10 years and has been a member of the Atos Scientific Community since 2011 where he leads research in the Media area. As well, Paul is responsible for the Media Industry in the Atos Expert Community.

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