Over half (57 percent) of the respondents to the annual Accenture survey of senior media and entertainment executives  identified the rapid growth of user-generated content as one of the top three challenges they face today. Respondents included 110 advertising, film, music, publishing, radio, Internet, videogame and TV professionals working in North America and Europe.
Among the multiple formats of user-generated content — which includes amateur digital videos, podcasts, mobile-phone photography, wikis and social-media blogs — short-form video is identified by 53 percent as having the highest growth potential over the next five years. In contrast, respondents view consumer and business publishing as only marginally important, with only nine percent and four percent, respectively, attributing high-growth potential to these two segments.
The survey results highlight the importance of questions that many stock providers have already begun to address. Will short-form video need the same type of stock video clips now used in TV ads? Will TV ads migrate to the Internet, resulting in Internet use growing at the same rate as television use declines? Predictions for the latter have abounded for nearly a decade, yet television remains the dominant market for footage providers.
According to the ACSIL Global Survey of Stock Footage Companies 2007 , television represents 66 percent of footage sales. What will happen to this market share if, in migrating to the Internet, advertisers turn to user-generated footage? With several recent ventures offering access to such content –ShutterStock, RevoStock and iStockvideo — the stock-footage industry segment is next to experience the effects of the micro-payment business model.
(Julia Dudnik Stern contributes to Jim Pickerell’s Selling Stock.)