Birnbach Communications’ Top Predictions for 2013, Part VIII



Premature deathwatch of things that are very much alive, Part II (Deathwatch Part I is available here.)

o    Landlines and cellphones that aren’t smartphones: The death of the landline has been foretold for several years. And while we know of some people who have given up their landline and only use a cellphone, and even more people who maintain a landline but never check their landline’s voicemail, the vast majority of Americans continue to own a landline even if they don’t use it regularly. What’s saving the landline? Packages that combine phone, Internet and cable offerings and because a landline is probably the cheapest communications service most of us use. As for dumb phones, they’ll continue as long as parents want to equip their kids with a phone for emergencies but one that won’t distract them as a smartphone will.
o    Press releases: Reporters have been wishing for press releases to die just as VCs have been wishing the death of PowerPoint so that they never have to be bored again in another pitch meeting. Despite social media, there’s still a place and a value to press releases.
o    CES: Last year we said CES was being supplanted by SXSW, which focuses more on social media and apps. We stand by that but we don’t think CES is dead, it’s just declining in impact. There were far fewer articles and broadcast stories covering the latest CES tech but CES still gets covered (even if to say how boring it was).
o    Privacy: Facebook and most social media has basically killed off the traditional definition of privacy — nothing new about that. But pundits proclaim privacy is dead overlook the fact that each time Facebook revises its privacy policies, there’s often media coverage and a negative response. (Of course, the negative response has never stopped Facebook.)

Let us know if you agree or disagree. Check back tomorrow for additional predictions or click here for Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI or Part VII

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