Diary on the Digital Revolution

DLD conference

Gutenberg invented the printing press more than 500 years ago. Then came photography, the telephone, later television and the World Wide Web. Publisher Hubert Burda shares his personal notes from the last 25 years of the digital revolution - and it's only the beginning.

It's always weird to introduce the host of a party to the party crowd, Dominik Wichmann opened the discussion with Hubert Burda about his new book "The Dairy on the Digital Revolution".

More than 25 years Hubert Burda wrote a diary about the modern times, the change of publishing through digitalization. It started at the end of the 1980's with the scanners for pictures. Last year Hubert Burda decided to recap the last 25 years of disruption and change. He wanted to analyzed what has really changed over the last years.

Google changed a lot since 2003, society changed. He faced the incredible power of digital revolution. Especially the publishers have problems, but Hubert Burda Media is one of the role models who changed to digital without lots of problems. Hubert Burda thanked Dr. Paul-Bernhard Kallen for his good work on the digital change.

Everything was perfect? No. "I dreamed of incredible revenues", Hubert Burda told us about the shift from print to digital. But Google took away a lot of advertising, he explained why every publisher struggled with digitalization. That's not the only issue publishers have to deal with. People are willing to pay for everything on the internet exempt from paying for news.

"I doubt if people will pay for special content behind the paywall."

The main challenge for publishers will be to find other possibilities out there. There are thousands on the internet.

"The old publishing model doesn't work online. You have to find out where people pay on the web, just look at Xing and Holiday Check."

But if the old "Verlegermodell" doesn't work anymore, what will be next? The next big thing is just around the corner. The internet of things will connect our daily life. What does it mean for magazines about e.g. lifestyle, fashion, and food? Do they have to change as well and how will it look like?

"Hedgefonds will buy media companies in Germany. And that's not bad: They know how to run successful businesses."

Mentioned in this live blog

Burda bw
Hubert Burda
Hubert Burda Media Holding KG
Hubert Burda Media Holding KG

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