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A Road More Traveled: Media Firms and Social Media

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Ty Ahmad-Taylor, CEO and Founder, FanFeedr


A veteran of the media world with a lengthy career at Viacom (MTV, VH1), Ty Ahmad-Taylor now directs FanFeedr, a real-time personalized sports application that can be accessed across Web, mobile, and eventually interactive television. He observes here that although most media firms believe they are in the distribution business-finding channels through which to make their product available - the truth is that they are in the audience business. For example, ""The television business is based on reach and frequency - how many people watch a show, and how many times they watch it."" All any channel wants is to be in as many homes as possible-it doesn't necessarily have to control the means by which it gets there. Which makes it all the more puzzling that many media companies fight to control where their product appears once it is online. As Ahmad-Taylor writes, it is important to reach an audience ""where they elect to spend time, rather than where one would want them to spend time."" According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Americans now spend roughly 7 percent of their time online, and much of that time is spent using social networks. Media outlets concerned about possible cannibalization of their revenues should consider the current state of the recording industry as a cautionary tale.




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