Marketwire was a proud sponsor of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)-Silicon Valley’s Media Predicts 2010 event , December 2nd, at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. This annual event features a number of influential journalists and bloggers who offer up their bold predictions on what will occur in the technology space in the coming year.
This year’s panel of journalists and bloggers included:
- Brad Stone, The New York Times 
- Byron Acohido, USA Today 
- Connie Guglielmo, Bloomberg News 
- Matt Marshall, VentureBeat 
- Om Malik, GigaOM 
- Steven Levy, WIRED 
- Jim Goldman (Moderator), CNBC 
- Duffy Jennings (Master of Ceremonies), SFGate 
One of the night’s most interesting exchanges took place between USA Today’s  Byron Acohido and GigaOM’s  chief blogger, Om Malik. Acohido remarked to Malik that “you are not a professional journalist” greatly rousing the already animated Malik, as well as the entire audience. It seems there is still a notion that journalists at “traditional” publications (like USA Today , The New York Times , etc.) are more seasoned and entitled than writers for newer blog organizations. I’m sure bloggers like Malik, Arianna Huffington (The Huffington Post ) and Perez Hilton (PerezHilton.com ) would strongly disagree with this sentiment.
The panel covered a wide array of tech topics over the three-hour session and posed a lot of thought-provoking questions: Will Facebook IPO, and how will Twitter make money?
What will Comcast’s acquisition of NBC mean in the media space? What’s going on outside the U.S., particularly in China and India?
Facebook, Twitter, Apple, and Microsoft dominated the discussion, and the panel was confident that Facebook would be a strong IPO candidate in 2010, believing the number of users would continue to grow. But the panel was split on the future of Twitter. One panelist believed the micro-blogging phenom would cement itself as the most important “technology” on earth next year because of its ability to give each person their own “megaphone,” democratically speaking. Another panelist thought Twitter was definitely a hot concept, but would ultimately disappear just as PointCast  did in the late 1990s.
On the subject of Apple, one panelist remarked that because Apple is always “on the offensive” in terms of product development and marketing, they will continue to remain atop the tech world, and their stock will continue to rise. There is little stopping Apple right now (not even Steve Jobs’ poor health), and many believe their push into the “tablet ” space will be a successful venture.
In regards to Microsoft, there was agreement among the panelists that Microsoft is still an incredibly powerful organization, due in large part to their market-dominating Windows platform. What’s unknown is where Microsoft will make their next push – will they continue to develop their retail products (like the Xbox and Zune); will they step up their efforts in the services space? Where will Bing go, and will it even attempt to take on Google?
For all of these questions, the panelists and guests agree that we will just have to wait and see.