Thursday, July 21, 2005


There have been stories in recent weeks about a new technology called Slingbox. While this blog is not about new technologies, it is concerned with how technologies affect communications and PR. Slingbox does both. Essentially, it takes TV signals from any location and routes them to any other through the internet. It has removed geographical barriers of television just as TIVO removed time barriers. We know TIVO threatens the economic model of commercial television because it allows viewers to skip commercials. Slingbox takes away targeted promotion. On the other hand, it allows local messages to reach across geography, which might be a benefit.

The importance of Slingbox is that it is a final step in the complete transformation of electronic media as we know them. That means it is a final step in how we deal with electronic media as well. While it is too early to know how PR will have to adapt in years to come, we know that it will change its approach. My guess is that the change will be evolutionary and will coincide with the growth of Digital Video Recorders and forwarding technology like Slingbox. But it's fun to think about the possibility of getting a spokesperson on air in Wichita with the intent of getting the message to Kansas City and beyond because people are forwarding it automatically. (I'm not sure I understand what this means yet.)


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