Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Fit me into your schedule?

Two great articles in the NY times over the opening weekend of the Olympics.

The first, from Brian Stelter's TV Decoder blog, explains why NBC's attempt to time shift the Olympic opening ceremony for US citizens worked to a certain degree, but pissed a lot of people off.

Only a few people were able to watch any of the amazing (if a little candied (I hearby trademark the use of the term candied - meaning to lie and/or fake parts of an already impressive story or event to make everything seem a little more exciting/perfect.)) events unfold live via a small number of live streams.

It couldn't be called a failure though, as an average of 34.2 million Americans waited until they were home from work and plonked themselves in front of the TV for the 4 hour ceremony.

As Stelter points out many preferred to see it all in full HD glory than on a pokey 240 pixel wide window.

The second story from David Carr refers to Stelter's post but he points out that in the TiVo (Sky+ in the uk - or should that be generic digital hard drive recording facility?!) and internet age, it's the audience that chooses the schedule not the broadcasters.

He links it with a problem faced by many web editors attached to traditional newspapers - the holding of news from the web to retain value at the newspaper. But as he points out:

'If the future of our business is online, then why set up a firewall, delaying the best content to protect a legacy product?'
He also puts forward an interesting theory on the future of print news.

'The horizon line for when a newspaper on the street is serving as a kind of brochure of a rich online product does not seem far off.'

Does anyone have anymore on this concept - I can see it working in London with all the commuters getting tit-bits of news on the Tube before checking out the full stories when they get in to work.

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