Changing Communications – Changing Public Policy and Healthcare Reform

I have been struck by how quickly the communications landscape is changing.  When television was invented, it took decades before there was widespread uptake and "I Love Lucy" was playing in everyone's living room.  In 1981, there were news stories about how someday, people might actually read newspapers on their computers – another milestone that took decades to develop.  

But today, innovation in communications is happening and uptake is no longer taking decades – it is no longer taking months.  It takes weeks to change the communications atmosphere.  A little over ten years ago, Google at eight employees – today the company is not just a noun, it is a verb that is central to our daily lives.  Facebook only came into existence in 2005 and today has over 350,000,000 people using it.  The YouTube domain came into being in February 2005 and today over 20 hours of video are being uploaded every single minute.   Twitter only came into existence as a company in 2007 and today there are millions of users including 25% of the U.S. Congress and all of the top 100 newspapers in the country.  People are dramatically changing the way they communicate and when that happens, it changes the way public policy will be made.  

Change is happening so fast, we barely can stop and get perspective.

But perspective is important when times are changing.  Some of my colleagues at Fleishman-Hillard are launching a new  video series called "L Street" – videos featuring experts who provide perspective.  

Here in the first episode of L Street are 5 of my FH buds from healthcare and public affairs discussing the communications implications of health care reform.  What you will see them discuss is not only an appreciation for the fact that American society has had to absorb an amazing amount of information around health care reform, but that the landscape for communications has also changed dramatically – from the way that people are organizing in grass roots, to the ways that reporters are covering stories.  Take six minutes and watch it.  You'll be a fan of L Street just the way I am now.    You can also see this at the Eye on FDA YouTube Channel.  

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