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Media Management on the Mind at SXSW

by on March 14, 2012

With the South by Southwest (SXSW) conference now entering its second week, the city of Austin, Texas, is abuzz with thousands of bright minds sharing and discussing their ideas in a wide variety of settings. The event has grown from a small local music festival to become an international destination that incorporates film and interactive multimedia components as well. As concert performers and tech industry luminaries rub shoulders with independent movie buffs and social media gurus, it can be hard to find a link between everyone in attendance.

But whether they know it or not, the value of information and the importance of media management could be the common thread.

Big data.

As both companies and consumers embrace the digital era in greater numbers, they are leaving a massive trail of information in their wake. From Amazon orders and Foursquare check-ins to customer satisfaction surveys and regional sales figures, data is being created at faster rates than ever before. For the IT manager, the question has become: how can I store all of this information? For the upstart entrepreneur, the question seems to be: how can I leverage this data to develop market-changing insights?

Both questions have been posed and answered at various SXSW events and panel discussions throughout the week as digital advertisers discuss how to uncover what the customer really wants and tech executives explain how they plan to meet these challenges with innovative new media management technologies and strategies.

Digging into the archives.

Music and film continue to be the primary draws at SXSW as hopeful young bands plot their first major breakthroughs and established documentarians look to extend their legacies with provocative scenes from their latest projects. For the artists taking the stage, many will look to capture the moment for industry executives or just personal memories. For the professional musician, hoping your fans post an iPhone video no longer suffices. Instead, their tech teams will be called upon to record a master copy and likely create multiple copies and backups to store and share. The filmmakers will have similar ambitions, but in reverse order. They will need to take their original footage and convert it into whatever format the SXSW screening rooms support.

Hacker’s haven.

Last but not least, the laptops, smartphones and tablets that many festival goers will be carrying in tow provide ample opportunity for savvy hackers. As concert critics and press teams connect to unsecured Wi-Fi networks to finish their pieces ahead of deadline, motivated cybercriminals could wreak all kinds of havoc on both their data and company networks. And as concert fans update their social media profiles to tell their friends where they are and what show they just saw, hackers could have an even easier route to sensitive data.

With that said, tech experts – several of which were in attendance – spoke to the importance of sheltering personal and professional information from unwarranted attention.

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