Editor’s Note

Throughout the launch of KidScreen, a phrase kept recurring in our minds, like a pulse beat monitoring the gestation of a new life. It was the saying: 'Timing is everything.'...
January 1, 1996

Throughout the launch of KidScreen, a phrase kept recurring in our minds, like a pulse beat monitoring the gestation of a new life. It was the saying: ‘Timing is everything.’

The greatest idea, no matter how dazzling in concept, will not succeed if it is not equally brilliant in its timing.

We’ve heard repeatedly over the past several months that KidScreen is one of those cases where an idea, and the market readiness for it, seem to have intersected at just the right time.

KidScreen is a trade publication that is all about reaching children through entertainment software. It is both a new title and a new approach to trade publishing. Rather than reporting on an industry along traditionally defined vertical boundaries, KidScreen is tracking its coverage along a horizontal axis ­ gathering information relevant to business people working in a number of industries.

Their common interest is that they are all trying to reach children.

Production studio executives, broadcasters, ad agency people, consumer marketers, retailers, new media developers, licensing and merchandising agents. They are all looking outside their own narrow disciplines in search of meaningful alliances with counterparts in adjoining industries. Marketers need recognizable figures to help sell their products. Studios need partnerships with marketers to help finance their projects. Broadcasters need World Wide Web sites to build audience loyalty. Licensing agents need to carefully place all these pieces together to make the puzzle work.

Not only have the old lines of industrial demarcation collapsed. So have the geo-political boundaries. Creative and business people the world over are linking together in co-operative ventures as never before.

Reporting on this global cross-pollination of interests is the editorial mandate of KidScreen.

The market forces leading up to this change have occurred broadly within the mass media over the past 10 years or so, but have been late in hitting the children’s sector because of its lesser status compared to the bigger ticket prime-time market. Those major issues ­ media fragmentation, in particular cable penetration in the U.S., heightened competition among the suppliers and distributors of programming, and a breed of modern consumer marketers hungry for smarter, more targeted approaches in reaching their audiences ­ are forcing new alliances within the children’s market.

To complicate matters even further, the consumer ­ today’s child ­ has changed utterly. The relatively compliant child of a generation ago has been replaced by a fickle, savvy, sophisticated and tremendously discerning customer who will identify, and turn off to, an ill-conceived advance faster than the switch of a remote control.

All of those in the business of trying to reach these kids today truly need each other. This necessary convergence of interests has changed the way everyone d’es business.

KidScreen reflects that change.

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