Pardon me as I go on one of my Tyler Durdenesque rants here but we are living in remarkable and confounding times right now, ladies and gentlemen. The exponential growth of technological advances has forever changed the world in several ways. For one, network television is now TiVo'd, DVR'd and Hulu'd to hell so Nielsen Ratings no longer accurately tell the tale about what shows are watched the most. The problem is that television works off of commercial time sold to companies for the live viewing audience. The music industry is still stuck on reporting Soundscan numbers even though digital sales are up on average 250% each year since 2005. Why don't we get the iTunes, eMusic and Amazon digital sales numbers combined and reported along with the weekly Soundscan numbers then? Wouldn't it only make sense given that digital sales seem to be the wave of the future?
Since big business decided to not roll with the punches and embrace the new changes that advances in technology and cultural changes in general brought about, some of our traditional media formats are suffering tremendously. The print media is suffering as several magazines and newspapers have either folded or changed to strictly online publications instead. It's been reported that 525 publications folded just in 2008 alone. Quincy Jones said that he was going to get his magazine back and switch to an online publication instead because the print media was all but dead. Damn, if Q sees that then he's a pretty progressive thinker even at his age!
The question is what happens to all of the writers the used to work for these publications? What about all of the people currently in college for journalism...what the fuck are they supposed to do for a living when they get out of school? Who's hiring? I've seen Blender, Hip Hop Connection, King and Vibe go under in recent months and heard even more rumors surrounding other publications like Complex (still running), and Giant (I dunno but for now? Still going). Even Entertainment Weekly has Death's Head hovering over it for God's sake! (TMZ is fine BTW). Spin has recently let a gang of employees go and slashed it's expenses drastically in hopes of staying afloat and weathering the storm. Good luck with that one, guys! Who knew the collapse of the auto industry would affect the print media in such a way?
Already in 2009 more than 60 publications have recently folded including most of the ones that offered me jobs or an opportunity to write for them in the past year. The others have had their budget's slashed severely and cut costs to offset the plunge in ad pages being bought in their magazines. The King magazine employees first found out that they would soon be out of a job via Twitter and Facebook, not a good look. So what does that mean for me or many of my other blogging brethren/sisteren that hoped to parlay our blogging into writing careers? Where the hell do we go? Who's gonna pay us to wax poetic (or Spoken Word) about Hip Hop or in my case Hip Hop related fuckery of all kinds (or not really...it depends)? Do we all get together and start our own internet media conglomerate and build something new from the ashes of the old dead system instead? Time will tell, I guess.
I've seen the box stores/record stores progressively die when I was working in managing them up close. I've even seen the video store die a slow and agonizing death while I was working in them (and using Netflix...LOL). I've jumped ship every other time I've seen "Mene Mene Tikel Upharsin" written on the wall before. I quit being an emcee when I realized that I didn't wanna grind hard to get back in "the game" anymore at age 30 after leaving a middle managerial position @ CVS back in 2005. It took me days before I was able to bring myself to write a blog this week because I thought to myself "What's the point? It won't go any farther than this blog!". I've since come to my senses but seriously "Fuck am I gonna do now, huh? It's all fucked up now!" © Diddy
There may be no more light at the end of this tunnel anymore so it might be time for me to switch up my attack plan. I've been developing multiple scripts and screenplays with my brothers and I'm back to my treatments for potential graphic novels as well. The post office ain't hiring (budget cuts) but Marvel, DC, Vertigo, etc. are still looking for talent (provided you self publish your own graphic novels/comics and grind so they recognize you). When the environment around you changes, you adapt to ensure your own survival. When the environment changes drastically all of the biggest dinosaurs disappear from the Earth first. Adapt or die.