Carli Thought Bubble

Word Cloud from Don Carli Interview

Do you wonder how future citizens will get their news? Are you confused by the competing claims coming from marketers of each new digital communication device? Is the internet a more sustainable platform for media than print? No one speaking today, has more brilliant answers to these and other publishing industry questions than leading researcher and author, Don Carli, Executive VP of SustainCommWorld.

In a recent interview with Don Carli, written by Robert Ivan of Metaprinter.com, he raises many important points about the media platforms delivering the news, the convergence of print and digital technologies, and the need to create more sustainable business models and supply chain business ecologies, not just more cool new products.

My biggest concern about the dramatic loss of newspapers around the country is the impact this will have on democracy. As reported in The Nation, a recent Princeton University study found a decline in voter turn out after the closing of the Cincinnati newspaper. This statement only hints at the serious consequences for democracy if we unsuccessfully address these media industry problems. As Mr. Carli states:

The first tenet of sustainability is having a political system that secures effective participation of its citizens in decision making. That is the role served by journalists and the media channels that deliver and store their content.

Even if you are unconcerned with the loss of local newspapers, see no benefit of having the Fourth Estate, and think all citizens are well-served by the inexhaustible supply of news and information on the Internet then consider this: how sustainable is it for 6.7 billion people of the world to get their news from an electronic device? Mr. Carli sees the issues clearly when he points out:

We need to recognize that our current digital media supply chains and media types are unsustainable before we kick print media to the curb and entrust our future to an ephemeral and uncertain digital media monoculture.

Today’s print vs. digital media debates are a zero sum game. Regardless of which media wins the war of words we all lose. The fact is we will need both print and digital media for many years to come and we need them to both become far more sustainable than they are today.

I signed up to follow Don Carli on Twitter. He seems like someone capable of leading the way?