EPIC 2015There's an updated version of EPIC available, the intriguing film about the future of news distribution.

If you missed it - you must watch it. It is well worth eight minutes of your time - more here.

The new version looks forward one more year, to 2015, and seems slightly less doomy than the first.

I had a hunch that this little gem might be the product of an evening in the pub - and it turns out I was about right:

"My co-author Matt Thompson and I were down in Miami for a weekend, and I had brought along a copy of a speech by [New York Times digital SVP] Martin Nisenholtz," Robin Sloan told me.

"We disagreed over what Nisenholtz was trying to say, so we argued over it as we went from bar to bar on South Beach in Miami.

"I remember very vividly sitting in giant chairs shaped like high-heeled shoes, staring up at the ceiling, beer in hand as we plotted this stuff out."

The ideas were developed over a number of weeks with help from colleagues at the Poynter Institute. There were plans for a detailed EPIC website with background information, discussion and even a blog, but Robin admits they never got around to that.

That said, publishing the movie without explanation kind of added to the sinister feel of the whole thing.

It's hard to say exactly how many people have seen EPIC because the movie is hosted on a number of different sites. But on Robin's site alone there have been around 500,000 downloads, so it's not unreasonable to estimate that about one million people have seen it. Libraries, marketeers and journalists regularly contact him for a downloadable version of the film to use in presentations.

Robin and Matt have given the 2015 update a slightly more optimistic spin.

"Too many people watched EPIC 2014 and came away thinking we hate the internet - which of course could not be farther from the truth!"

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