PPA Conference and the Digital Future

We were not able to get across to the PPA conference so we relied on reports blogged for the Guardian’s Organ Grinder by Stephen Brook and Jemima Kiss. I was struck by the quoted comment of Stevie Spring (CEO of Future Publishing):

Spring also pours scorn about predicts of the digital future. “Anyone who has a forecast beyond six months is fooling themselves because none of us have a clue.”

That seems broadly right! Though, at Exact Editions, we are sure that the future will be heavily digital much sooner that the CEO’s realise. But for sure, the only safe prediction for the future is that we will all be surprised by it, in that sense we none of us have a clue.

But there was an amusing placement, since the Guardian’s Organ Grinder had the PPA reports next to reports from Microsoft where Bill Gates was saying that all newspapers (he was referring to the advertising revenues) will be online within five years. If that happens with newspapers, it is a racing certainty the same will happen with magazines. I wonder how many of the CEO’s have really taken that one on board? Yes, the advertising revenues will also be online. Gates is right, and Stevie Spring is right: we none of us have a clue but there will be an innexorable shift and as Gates put it ‘a massive amount of innovation’ will be there with it.