Ken Kurson on the Media Industry’s Transformation
Over the last several years, the media industry has totally changed, dramatically. This has happened across all news properties, regardless of the nature of how they might have traditionally been run predating these changes. Indeed the digital and technological advances of the last decade have caught up with the media industry just as they have caught up with so many different industries.
Ken Kurson has been at the forefront of the media industry in a variety of different capacities over the last few decades. His career provides some insight into the many ways in which the industry is changing – at an incredibly accelerating fashion. Kurson served as the editor in chief of Observer for many years. During his tenure, he oversaw the development and journalistic production at both The New York Observer and The Commercial Observer.
During his time serving as the news property’s editor in chief, Kurson led the transition of the media property from a print outlet to a digital news property. In doing so, Kurson pioneered and represented a larger change that has taken place across the industry at so many different news properties. Indeed, the journalism industry has struggled in recent years in terms of establishing economic and financial models that prove sustainable.
With print media becoming a dinosaur of sorts and with few having an interest in print media anymore, the web indeed has become the hub for news production, and for good reason. We’ve seen an increasing interest among the broader public to turn to the web for news consumption, as opposed to buying the print daily as many of them once did. As this transformation in the ways in which people consume news has taken root, many news properties have changed their functions from print properties to digital news properties.
The Times of Israel is an example of an outlet that has done so, in the Jewish media landscape. Among mainstream media outlets, there have been extraordinary amounts of news properties that have done the same. Among them are certainly The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, which both continue to enjoy surreal amounts of advertising revenue from their digital platforms. Esquire is another property that has been notable in being a part of this broader industry-wide transition. These changes are indeed dramatic in many instances.
But just because the changes themselves have been of substantial scope and magnitude does not mean the effect has been an adverse one. Not unlike other industries in the commercial landscape, many media properties have been prepared and have adapted accordingly with the broader changes that have taken root. Others have unfortunately not been as successful or in some cases even actively resistant to embrace the changes that have come with the increase in digital circulation, consumption and reach.
Indeed this is a principle that is in no way limited to the media industry. In any and every industry, those that have properly embraced the changes and reforms that have come with the technological revolution, have proven more successful at navigating these unchartered waters. But yet there are some actors that have nonetheless proven resistant to these changes, and understandably so. It’s basic human nature for people to not be excited by change but instead be intimidated by it. But the technological revolution has demonstrated that it is here to stay, and certainly only going to increase in its scope, its magnitude and the ways in which it will continue affecting industries, and their respective stability.
Media entrepreneurs have thrived in this changed media environment however. Ken Kurson is certainly among them. Kurson has led the creation of a series of news properties that have accumulated loyal and enthusiastic followings and audiences along the way. Among them are Book and Film Globe, Fine Art Globe and many others. As the economics of the media industry continue to change, it will be interesting for observers to be able to monitor the continued trend of media entrepreneurs utilizing the modern day advances in technology to the advantage of their media platforms. Indeed many of these advances have provided unique tools in the way of not only helping to generate and create substantial followings in terms of readership; but also to learn about one’s audiences in a way that were never available.