Here's our report card for the ongoing stories we said we'd see covered in the media in 2013.
o The implementation and implications of Obamacare: This is one of 2013’s biggest stories (other than twerking, which we didn’t predict). This will be a big story in 2014 as both political parties try to make their cases ahead of the midterm elections. Grade: A+.
o Gun control laws: As an issue, guns generated a lot of media coverage. Grade: A.
o Deficits, spending cuts, taxes, etc.: This got a boost when the House of Representatives pushed the government to shut down for two weeks. This will continue to be a story in 2014. Grade: A.
o Made in the USA: Continued to generate coverage, including in the July/August issue of Fast Company featured a compelling story, "The Road To Resilience: How Unscientific Innovation Saved Marlin Steel;A little maker of metal baskets shows how U.S. manufacturers can thrive against all comers. Grade: B+.
o Cybercrime and cyberwarfare: Lots of coverage on this, especially in the first half of 2013 before leaks and NSA took over. Grade: B+.
o Salaries paid women vs. men. There was some coverage about salaries but even more coverage about the roles of women in business, thanks to Facebook's COO, Sheryl Sandberg, has generated tons of coverage as the result of her book, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. In 2013, Lean In became the big gender-related story. Grade: B.
o Cashless payments. We expect cashless wallets to go mainstream by 2016, and are holding to that, even as alternate credit card payment systems like Square proliferate. The Boston Globe validated our prediction with an article: "Not paying by smartphone? You soon will, many bet. Grade: A.
o Crowdsourcing/daily deals: We were right that crowdsourcing continued to be a big story and right that daily deal sites would decline in coverage. Grade: A+.
o Star Wars: We were not surprised Wired made the new Star Wars film (not due to 2015) a cover story, but we were pleased. Another good prediction. There will be more speculation on characters and story lines in 2014. Grade: A.
o Fees: We said we “don’t actually expect there to be a lot of coverage of how companies use fees to cover costs and raise revenues. However, we expect companies to continue to rely on fees on services they used to provide for free to boost their bottom lines.” Grade: B.