It began life as the ITVA, which in it's day counted 10,000 members or more. The ITVA was a major force in the field of corporate video, communications and beyond. I still see ITVA awards and plaques on the office wall of some corporate media managers. Before the millenium many large corporations began out-sourcing their media operations, closing their in-house studios and laying off producers, writers, camera operators, editors and technicians. Membership in a professional organization and the need for continuing education in technology and methods in a fast changing industry was no longer subsidized by big business. All those employees were now freelancers. And to many freelancers, dues were just another expense.
By the turn of the century (remember Y2K, anyone?) the process seemed to have reached well across the country and the ITVA reconstituted itself into the new MCA-i. Since then, despite a lot of dedication, hard work and innovative efforts by a lot of people, the membership kept getting smaller. If you look around the business landscape you'll see the tombstones of a lot of other associations who met the same fate. Most were not able to hold on as long as the MCA-i.
The new, local organizations will will have different names but still be offering the bread and butter we all need: continuing education for working pros, industry updates on technology, techniques and of course, in-person networking. That last is the most important and underrated value of the last 20 years!
The lesson for all of us working in any and every area of "Media" is not that things will change but that we must adapt and grow ...or die. There's a second lesson, equally important: Don't just observe, get involved! Join and participate for benefit of the community. And in doing so you'll be benefitting yourself with knowledge, camaraderie