Convinced that today's media industry is in for dramatic turmoil? Here's some futuristic thinking worth a look, even for jaded media watchers.
The scenario: Within ten years from today Google and Amazon merge, forcing the beacon of mainstream media to go offline and sue the Googlezon colossus in the United States Supreme Court for violation of copyright law.
In an eight-minute flash presentation, the Museum of Media History presents its picture for how the Fourth Estate will be toppled by participatory journalism, aided by the titans of the Internet industry.
Seminal moments leading to the destruction of the media industry include the creation of the Web, the founding of Amazon and Google, blogging, TiVo and social networking services, such as Friendster.
But it's the year 2004, according to the clip, that sets the stage for dramatic changes in how people consume--and make--their news and information. Sony and Philips announce the first mass-produced electronic paper; Microsoft unveils a social news filter Newsbot; and Amazon unveils its own search engine.
Then the video clip's makers get really creative. Awash in cash from going public, Google acquires TiVo in 2005. The following year sees the emergence of the Google Grid, which allows consumers to access an unlimited amount of storage and bandwidth to share media.
Google and Amazon merge in 2008 and trump Microsoft's competitive efforts with an algorithm that allows computers to construct news stories dynamically tailored to each individual user.
The symbolic demise of the Fourth Estate occurs in 2011 when the New York Times Company loses its suit against Googlezon.
In 2014, Googlezon unleashes EPIC, the Evolving Personalized Information Construct, which collects and filters media of all types to consumers. Some people are actually employed, too, paid according to the popularity of their work.