2007: The Online Video Era?
If collective consciousness has any power over the magazine publishing industry, nowhere is it more evident than in the pursuit of video content. During 2006, chatter about online video reached an all-time high at tradeshows as more publishers hopped onto the video bandwagon. As a result, last year became a build-up, working-out-the-kinks period for many. It was all in preparation for 2007—the year that some have dubbed as the official start of an online video era for magazine professionals.
Sure, a few publishers were ahead of the game, and, certainly, others are straggling behind. When all is said and done, 2007 will see a fusion of two seemingly incompatible entities—print and video.
But, why now? Are readers settling for nothing less, and are advertisers finally embracing the video phenomenon?
The Time Has Come
Who better to represent this significant event than a magazine designed specifically for gadgetry types: Wired.
According to Publisher Jay Lauf, Wired turned to video a year ago because, “It’s a natural extension of what we do in our magazine. It provides a new way to show content, including material that might end up on the cutting room floor. It’s in high demand, by readers and advertisers, and is a pursuit deemed necessary at this point in time.”
It’s almost as if the universe conspired to allow Wired to debut video in what could be described as the launch extraordinaire. This is how it all broke down: CondéNast bought back Wired.com in July 2006, bringing the site under the same ownership as Wired magazine. In September, the truth behind lonelygirl15—a pioneering online video venture depicting the Web-based diaries of a teenage blogger that was actually a scripted serial featuring an actress —was revealed, and a month later, Google bought YouTube. Meanwhile, Wired had been prepping for its video launch and couldn’t have asked for two more fitting stories to cover in its December issue.