Saturday, May 22, 2004

The Price of Tea in China: The 2004 SIIA Content Forum Focuses on Key Profitability Themes

Everyone seemed to want to know the price of tea in China at this week's SIIA Content Forum at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, California - and some even seemed to be able to find it. The struggle between open Web capabilities and premium content services was at a high-volume pitch at this event, with its sub-theme "Show Me the Money!" somehow subservient to the greater issue of "Show Me the Margins!". Most presenters at this excellent event were working for reasonably profitable concerns, so the real issue for many was how to build their content businesses in sustainable ways that can keep up with the pace of change in online publishing. Nobody was sitting on their laurels in that pursuit, save perhaps the folks from Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal who were collecting Codie awards from the SIIA Tuesday night for their online efforts. At the heart of the struggle for profitable vContent was the success of content technologies to create content value that are now pressing hard on the assumption that business models for premium publishers as they exist today can ignore the power of open Web search engines and other emergent forces such as weblogs and enterprise content management. The great news is that this was a conference where many of the main agents of change were not the "barbarians at the gate" but instead major publishers, aggregators and distributors who are pushing forward into profitable ways of attacking the content marketplace using leading technologies.

Jean Bedord, Senior Analyst for Shore, provides a blow-by-blow review of the panel discussions in her eResources marketplace weblog, which we have opened up temporarily for non-registration access so that as many people as possible may take advantage of her insights. Enjoy!
Click here for a detailed account of the SIIA Content Forum panel discussions.
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