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European Commission urges innovation

Neelie KroesEuropean Commission vice-president Neelie Kroes has called on traditional media companies to “adapt and innovate” or risk becoming irrelevant as different sectors of the market increasingly converge.

Speaking at the Future Media Lab conference in Brussels, Kroes, vice-president of the European Commission responsible for the Digital Agenda, urged industry professionals – including those in the TV space – to “free yourselves from legacy thinking,” and to not “recite mantra positions of the past; but think how the future should be.”

“Take connected TV. In its various forms it could be a great platform for new content, with convenience, creativity, and choice. But it also means sectors once distinct converging: some historically subject to certain rules and protections; others not,” said Kroes, adding that the European Commission plans to launch a Green Paper tomorrow to consult on these issues.

“The digital world is blurring boundaries between sectors like media, telecom and ICT. This disrupts business models, challenges the value chain, changes the role of everyone from publisher to paperboy,” said Kroes.

“For all of those sectors, my advice is the same: don’t defend against digital disruption. To take advantage of online opportunity, you must adapt and innovate. The sectors that have done so are already getting their digital dividend, those that haven’t start to get squeezed.”