Wednesday, June 18, 2008

BPN 1132 Cross-media still needs finetuning

Yesterday the Mediapark Jaar Congres (Media Park Annual Conference) took place for the first time: MPCJ 2008. Media Park is in Hilversum the place where most of the public and commercial broadcast stations have their base. Over the years digital media companies have based themselves in that park as well as every self respecting broadcast station has now at least one web site, if not more. The conference was well visited. No less than 602 delegates had registered. This is a big number in The Netherlands; but one should not forget that the admission price was 50 euro over against the usual 950 euro. It was a conference with lectures, short movie reports, pitches, a spoken column and two interviews. It was a lot to chew on.

The overall theme of the Conference was officially cross-media, but could have been specified more closely as cross-media in a broadcast environment. In no way for example the lectures touched print. The closest to that came during an interview with Michiel Buitelaar, the COO to be of Sanoma. Buitelaar has worked for KPN and is presently working for Endemol; but he will leave his present post, which he accepted hardly a year ago, as he misses the work floor.

He was asked what cross-media meant to him. Endemol is usually describes as a format producer, he said. Instead of the word format he rather used the word brand (he is probably already accommodating to his new employer, which sees it print magazines also as brands). Cross-media to him was the use of a brand over more than one medium. A rather superficial definition IMHO. Buitelaar is not talking about cross-media, but about multiple media. You take a theme and you apply it to a medium, using the characteristics of that particular medium and that sit. Just one way multiple media. No mention is made of the interactive side of cross-media, i.e. the particular response yielded by the medium. I guess Buitelaar should start reading up cross-media literature before he joins Sanoma.

Buitelaar was asked how far Endemol is with cross-media? Is it used in all the formats that are generated. Endemol is working on it and now starts for example to put web programs in social networks, so that people can tell their friends about a particular television program and discuss it. But cross-media has not penetrated yet into all corners of Endemol, was his assessment. The 360 degrees format was not accepted yet by everyone. Partly this can be ascribed to the fact that TV stations have little contact with clients, Buitelaar said. But cross-media was coming through slowly at Endemol as could be seen on Upstaged, a brand new entertainment event by the BBC.

Blog Posting Number: 1132


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