Digital Media: The Silent Killer

By Stephanie Richardson
July 1, 2009

... Vibe Magazine has died ... well, they have gone out of business. They are just one of the latest magazine causalities that have been killed by this recession and digital media.

The funky Hip Hop magazine started in 1992 providing an alternative media voice to urban music. Started by Quincy Jones, Vibe Magazine was a market leader and a staple in the urban community. Over the past few years the magazine experienced some financial difficulties due (in part) to the automotive industry's decrease in advertising spending and the decline of the music industry. However, the main culprit was digital media which is essentially killing print publications. With celebrity bloggers and twitter breaking industry news, Vibe Magazine found it hard to keep up with the changing pace of the media industry.

Vibe Magazine was not the only publication to fall prey to these changes; Blender, Cosmo Girl, Best Life, Atlanta Peach and Oprah Home are just a few media outlets that were not able to survive.

From music to mail, the digital industry has drastically changed how people communicate with one another and exchange information. Unfortunately many companies don't fully understand the impact of digital media and they ultimately suffer because of it.

I can't help but wonder why didn't become the leading on-line destination for urban music news. Why isn't Def Jam the leading seller of digital music instead of Apples' Itunes? Successful businesses must understand how to successfully integrate digital media into their business model. They cannot just stay on pace with digital media, they have to stay one step ahead of it.

As I watch the postal industry scramble to figure out of to save their business (I guess raising the price of stamps is their solution), I wonder who will be the next victim of digital media.

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