And now, the future!

Or, the sisyphean task of divining the next thing in digital.

For someone who spent six years as a Classicist, I do love thinking about the future of digital communications. I love that despite the endless possibilities and a firm focus on the new, you often have to return to the old.

Because regardless of how sophisticated our modern environment is, we are all essentially the same through the ages and subject to the same jealousies, passions and basic needs. We have social media where the ancient Romans had the obverse of coins or public theatre. The media by which leaders communicate may have changed, but the emotional triggers are universal.

I’m working on a project for the UK Government’s Communications Service which aims to understand what the future holds for digital so that communications teams can get ready now for the challenges and opportunities ahead.

Which is easier said than done…

I’ve made my ‘starter for 10' discussion document public. I’ve asked a lot of very clever people who work across news media, data and video journalism, digital creative agencies, online publishing and academia to share their views. I’ve spoken with people who work in or around UK Government digital projects.

But the list of questions is growing rather than shrinking…

The next stage is to gather all the ideas, comments and hypotheses together and create practical and (fingers crossed) inspirational ways in which to embrace the future. But I imagine any hopes of a comprehensive full-stop are naive. The moment I think I’m done, as in the case of Sisyphus, the rock I’ve pushed to the top of the hill, will envitably roll back down again.

And in my case, that is all part of the fun.


If you’d like to join in my quest to find the future of digital communications, do add your thoughts on the discussion paper, and share your thoughts online using #CommsFutures

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