Red Herring has a fascinating article about one of the industries that has led technological revolutions as they relate to sea-change format adaptation: the adult film industry. Just like Milton Berle sold TVs, purveyors of blue movies sold home projectors, VCRs and then DVD players. That final era was paralleled by the industry’s growth online. Producers used the advances of each media technology as selling points. Those same selling points were utilized in the mainstream.
The interesting thing is that some of these content companies are saying “no” to the latest technologies of extended resolution video: HD DVD and Blu-Ray Disc. This has to be a blow to the companies proffering said technologies to the public; the very industry that catapulted VCRs and DVD players into popularity and into every living room is turning its back on a new, arguably relavent, advance.
What does this have to do with radio? It is not enough.
Adult film producers are coming to the conclusion that some critics of HD Radio already have: there is not enough benefit from the technology to warrant any or further investment. Without clear benefits in a scattered media landscape, technologies will fizzle quickly. Many folks are quite happy with the resolution of DVD, just as they are happy with the sound quality of compressed audio on their iPods and internet radio stations.
It is the same “better isn’t better enough to matter” argument is sending Sony’s Super Audio CD (SACD) into obscurity. Sure, it is better, but it does not matter enough to the consumer. Having sat down in front of a HiFi system at a boutique stereo shop with a Super Audio CD of Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue, I can clearly remember thinking “This sure is good, but will I buy it? No.” I would rather buy more regular CDs. And I have.
Content is king. I’m ashamed, but interested.
Link to Red Herring article.