I just received my copy of Michael Wolff's new book, Television Is The New Television and I can't wait to tear into it.
Wolff's thesis, in a nutshell is, that despite all the hysteria about changing media -- and there is plenty, both hysteria and change -- that the bottom line is still all about television.
He may be right. I have only read the first chapter, but I will let you know.
Meanwhile, here in a nutshell is his master thesis:
Television, according to the young Mr. Murdoch, is "the real killer app in digital." This sentiment could easily have served as an alternative subheadline for Mr. Wolff's book.
That television still reigns supreme may seem surprising, but the marketplace of new media content seems to agree. Despite a plethora of online live streams, the mother lode of money still seems to be in television, and probably will remain there for some time (Netflix and Reed Hastings excepted).
Earlier this week, BuzzFeed, at the top of the new media online food chain, announced that it was going to start its own TV show. Via the Wall Street Journal:
Speaking at the Cannes Lions advertising festival on Wednesday, Chief Executive Jonah Peretti said the company is now actively exploring ways to bring the BuzzFeed brand to television sets.
But yesterday, remarkably, The Daily Mail, the number one newspaper in the UK (OK, it's No. 2 behind The Sun, but I like The Daily Mail better); King of the Tabloids -- and a great read -- is moving to the U.S... on television.
The Daily Mail's website is the (now pay attention here), "the most visited English Language newspaper website in the world".
In the world!
ComScore gave the site 61.6 million unique desktop computer visitors for January 2014, ahead of The New York Times website, which received 41.97 million visitors in the same month. According to ComScore, MailOnline recorded 100.5 million visitors across desktop computers, smartphones and tablets in that month. In July 2014 it recorded 134 million users. So says Wikipedia. (You can look it up)
I have been a Daily Mail reader for years -- or what the paper calls A Daily Male.
But now, The Daily Mail is going to be a U.S. TV show (just like BuzzFeed), and probably a lot of other formerly print publications, once this all gets going.
I am sure they will be very successful. They have great content. And a great readership already.
You can read the whole story for yourself here
But this all makes sense.
Turn on your TV. 500 cable channels and most of them are just unwatchable.
The platform for TV and video long ago outstripped the capacity to feed that platform -- to provide it will compelling content.
The Daily Mail has compelling content.
But then again, so do a lot of other print publications.
All they have to do is turn it into video.
And we all know, that is not so hard to do.
Editor's Note: A previous version of this post incorrectly stated that Dr. Phil would be "the host" of Daily Mail TV.