I received many thoughtful responses from my recent post “Digital Signs are not Static!” It generated a number of comments that questioned the validity of my argument. It wasn’t the core of my argument that was necessarily flawed, but the totality of it. Many respondents brought up the point that static imagery works well in specific environments. What they might find interesting is that I agree with their conjecture, with a caveat.
Of all all the comments that were left, the one that resonated with me the most was from Ken Goldberg, CEO of Real Digital Media. In response to my post, Ken wrote:
As always in our industry, semantics seem to get in the way. “Static” can be interpreted to mean “without motion”. It can also be interpreted to mean “without change”. It is almost as if you have to define the argument as static vs. animated/motion, or static vs. dynamic. I am with Lou and Chuck in terms of saying that it is the dynamic aspect of digital signage that sets it apart, and that digital signage can be dynamically static and effective. It all depends on the venue and the intent.
Digital signage can be dynamically static and effective. Ken hit the nail on the head in saying that semantics appear to have confused the issue. While static imagery can work in the right environments, we must not think of digital signage as being static. It is, in and of itself, a dynamic medium. Digital signage draws its potential from its connectivity and intelligence.
Welcome screens and menu boards can be effective by solely featuring static content. The crux of my argument is that digital signage is never static. Just like the Internet, it is a living and breathing platform. It always maintains the ability to change. Its dynamic functionality need not be controlled by anything but itself. Digital signs can learn, adapt, and react to different stimuli. Digital signs are only as static as their users.