The DPP’s trends work at the beginning of 2023 first explored the hype around consumer tech innovations in our CES 2023 write-up. We then convened industry leaders in our Predictions 2023 workshop to extract their best musings and hypotheses about what will happen in the media industry over the next 12 months.
The DPP 2023 Predictions report, which are created by representatives from member organisations, is available here.
Industry practitioners from 34 organisations joined online sessions, facilitated by the DPP, to share their views on industry trends, emerging innovations and disruptive threats.
Here we present five key quotes from those sessions to share what’s on the minds of industry leaders.
Ongoing, perpetual transformation is now the norm, at least according to one member. There is no end-state - the real aim is to reach a position of perfect agility.
"We're trying to move from a project mentality to a product and platform mentality, which just means that transformation is a continuous thing that you're always doing. We're never going to climb that mountain and get to the top. That mountain will only get longer and further away. That's just the reality of business today."
One narrative thread from recent DPP forums runs that organisations have lost patience with ambitious transformation programmes. Instead, now is a time for truly optimising the tech investments of recent years.
But there is also the view that this in itself is innovative; adding the constraints of financial cautiousness adds a new dimension to innovation.
"Everybody recognises that just to stay still now involves transformation. It seems contradictory, but this is a moment of genuine innovation, while also being a moment of caution and cost control."
3. Automation and AI
At the beginning of 2023, a number of participants had experimented with new consumer generative artificial intelligence tools, and in particular language processing engine ChatGPT.
A common view is that these tools are not a threat to employment but instead an opportunity for the augmented human, and has particular relevance to subtitling and localisation.
"Since the announcement of ChatGPT I think the whole world has changed drastically. In our organisation, especially our creative team in the promo department, they've been using these technologies – not to directly deliver content, but to generate ideas. I think the use of AI in subtitling and automated promo generation will be the two main priorities for this year, especially where scale is needed."
There has been more talk than action around sustainability in recent years. And while organisations know the right things to say, they have not always lived up to their statements.
Contributors floated the idea that financial constraints and sustainability goals will clash in 2023. Until this point companies have wanted to do the right thing, but ultimately economics has trumped many of their green commitments. Macro circumstances though mean that environmental and economic impacts will come together in a way not previously experienced.
"This is the year where we're finally going to have an adult conversation about how we deliver environmental sustainability in an economically sustainable way, because to date, we've paid lip service to it. We've been ticking the box of sustainability. And the only way to move beyond that into actually delivering real change is by focusing on actions that have an economic impact, and the environmental impact will come along with that."
Free Ad-supported Streaming Television services are nothing new. But these services are at different levels of maturity - and have experienced varying degrees of success. One of the comments from an experienced media professional was that in 2023 "FAST will finally grow up", while others felt that the traditional linear broadcasters will become more engaged in FAST.
"FAST does tick the economics bucket, but it also ticks adaptability: what have I got, what can I reuse? It's going to be something that the linear broadcasters explore more and more as a way to monetise and to begin their transformation into a future of converged platforms."