A few years ago, I was having a conversation with my father-in-law about the changing landscape of television. Specifically, how the paradigm shift away from big network content delivery to more digital distribution would affect the production industry as a whole.
Since my father-in-law was a director of photography on some fairly high profile television shows and I was working as an editor at a cable channel, the worst case scenario in these discussions always centered around what would happen if the current industry model collapsed due to smaller, more independent content taking more and more of a foothold in the popular conscience. Would he still have a job at a big studio, if they couldn’t afford to do as many shows as they once did? If we had to do more independent projects, how would it affect our careers and livelihoods?
Luckily, for both of us, the answer has somewhat been answered in the years since, and as scary as the new model may seem, it won’t affect the creatives. The business of television is changing. It’s easier to get mindshare these days due to the internet, social networks, and mobile devices, but the producers of these shows will always need other people who can create it.
This evolutionary process is still on-going, but its ramifications are clear. To keep up in this industry, you have to try to stay sharp. To stay relevant you have to strive to be different. To stand out. And as long as you’re able to do this, the people who dream up the ideas, will need people like my father-in-law and myself to make those dreams a reality.
Content is, and always will be, king. It’s a tired phrase, but it still rings true. If you can create you will thrive, regardless of industry trends and speculation. So, let the accountants worry about the business models, I’ll be here with my headphones on making the stuff that dreams are made of.