2022 has been full of newsworthy media events:
- Twitter’s saga (see The Chief Twit)
- The disruption of social media platforms like BeReal and Mastodon (read what about Mastodon?)
- The continuous growth of live streaming with the increased popularity of Twitch.
But unfortunately, there have also been political key events that have impacted the media environment. The Russian invasion of Ukraine and Iran’s latest protests about women and civil rights have been at the center of social discussion and concern. In 2022, the world seems to have turned more unpredictable and volatile than in previous years. So, guessing about what might happen in the future might seem like a futile effort.
What can we expect in 2023? From environmentally conscious platforms to the development of innovative features, here is a glimpse of what we think 2023 might look like:
- A theme that starts off the list is sustainability. This movement is nothing new in other industries; society has increasingly advocated against resource depletion and naturally, the trend has also landed in the media business. But is 2023 a year of definite action? According to Instagram there are possibilities where this period highlights sustainable trends. In its annual report, Instagram believes that in 2023, recycling and creativity will emerge together, particularly in the fashion industry and among Gen Z users. On the other hand, Kantar acknowledges a different contribution towards the movement, focused on climate actions. They have stated a specific goal shared by both media and advertisers, “The Road to Net Zero,” where ads focus on environmental issues and the media aids in tackling those problems. Hence, this might be the period where the media landscape increasingly becomes a strong actor on climate change and is used as a platform with more significant presence in circular.
- The irruption of augmented and virtual reality. The media landscape will witness technological development in virtual and augmented reality (VR & AR) in 2023. Along with the use of artificial intelligence, many have agreed that technologies like these will become part of our daily lives and even more for media outlets. These tools are expected to become catalysts for better customer experience and the betterment platform services. Apple, for instance, has shown considerable interest in AR investment. Tim Cook, his current CEO, stated in recent interviews that it “will soon be as ubiquitous as a smartphone or the internet.” As a result, anticipation is warranted. The metaverse and its immersive promise, on the other hand, have yet to prove themselves to be the innovation predicted by Mr. Zuckerberg and his company, so we will leave it as a question mark in this list.
- Regarding specific bets on the growth of established and newer social media apps, TikTok seems to have the safest business model among other platforms. The following year will continue its reign with great potential in social commerce and with few disruptions from other engaging presences like BeReal. The authenticity that this network brought to users’ feeds seems to have gained the genuine interest of more individuals, and its growth has also become an issue to Also, there is a possibility of the development of some updates or beta features to avoid stagnation during the following months. Furthermore, despite the Chinese App’s promising growth prospects, it is currently facing serious regulatory threats that could stymie its evolution in Europe. Recently, European legislators considered banning the app due to its inability to filter content deemed harmful to children and teenagers. If the app does not comply with this issue by September 2023, it may face voiding responses from the European Digital Service Act. If TikTok is able to clarify such threats, the app is free to continue its golden age.
- On the other hand, Twitter has left questions unresolved, and users are intrigued about the company’s direction. However, since the platform has a great user base, and some may argue that itis too big to fail. But Musk is known for challenging the unthinkable so it’s future might be debatable. So, about Twitter’s expectations it is certain that it will be anything but dull.
- The list also looks at a specific tool developed by Open AI, the company known for creating an artificial art generator called “DALL·E,” which has launched “Chat GPT.” A bot that operates on the premise of “optimizing language models for dialogue,” which means that users can ask anything and expect a human-like response. The results are so convincing that we are slightly scared, because it appears to be capable of writing blog posts… and not just posts, but articles, essays, jokes, and even brainstorming. From a media standpoint, any social media, newspaper, or digital source of information could clearly benefit from the perks that imply relying on these features at no additional cost. However, while this appears to be a fantastic opportunity for users to generate interesting content via the app instantly, it also implies some risks to the media environment. One of its major disadvantages is that it only works with information that has been programmed or updated on its server. As a result, if that content undergoes significant changes, Chat GPT will only include it after it has been “retrained”. That is, the bot could unintentionally become a source of misinformation.Despite this potential drawback, recent Microsoft announcements have raised optimistic hopes for the future of the bot: the tech giant has decided to invest $10 billion in Open AI. As a result, Chat GPT may add new and improved features this year to complement media platforms’ services.
- Our last prediction doesn’t rely on a study and instead is based on our views as users. There have been great privacy and data management updates, like the proposal for removing third-party cookies and the passing of the general data regulation by the EU in 2018 (read Privacy protection). Still, bigger steps are ahead of us, and 2023 appears to be the year to take them. As technology advances, so will the measures and actions taken to improve data security. Legislators are expected to play a role and present proposals ahead of these changes, not only in the media environment but also on the digital landscape, ranging from the use of artificial intelligence to the laws that should be applied to augmented reality tools. As a result, the path toward safer social media use is getting closer, so behold, users! It appears that 2023 will bring significant challenges and exciting changes to the media environment. Sustainability, technology improvements, and, hopefully, heavy user protection investments are our scheduled events for this year.
Overall, as 2022 came to a close, these forecasts were mostly optimistic. Of course, this does not rule out the possibility of scandals or platform crises. Regardless of the circumstances, change is already expected, if not promised. As 2023 unfolds, we’ll see if the media environment has set the right expectations; we’re still awaiting some surprises.