[opendtv] Re: News: Television industry faces dark times

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2008 09:03:37 -0400

At 10:46 AM -0400 7/15/08, Manfredi, Albert E wrote:

The only change I can see from back in the early 1980s is that now it's
the service providers that offer PVRs, whereas back then individuals had
to set up their own VCRs to do time shift recording? I just don't
understand why this would come to a head so suddenly, decades after this
ad skipping (or fast forwarding anyway) became available.

Does "blinking 12:00" ring any bells?

Yes, it was possible to program a VCR to record programs. All one had to do was figure out when and on what channel the target program would be available, work through the arcane programming and make certain that they put a blank tape in the machine.

The PVR leverages the EPG, making it almost effortless to find a program and mark it for recording, and there is no need to worry about loading tapes. And Tivo goes WAY beyond this with its intelligent search functions.

Still, the demand for story-telling won't go away. My bet is that if the
content creators try selling these stories on an individual basis,
episode by episode, they will seriously lose their audience. More or
less like selling books outright only, and eliminating libraries.

These things tend to evolve. The main implication of the article is that a handful of companies are losing their ability to be the gatekeepers of content for the masses. Remember, most of the shows you see on TV were created by independent producers, not the networks.

I wonder how the Internet distribution of full episodes is doing, with
their minimal ad intrusion. You can't skip or fast forward, but the
networks seem smart enough to have figured out that people won't tune
out for the occasional 30 second ad. Do they get more for those 30
second ads than they do for the ridiculously long ad breaks on normal
distribution media? They should. I'm sure those 30 seconds are far more

Also evolving. The real value of the ads in these downloads is that it is possible to target ads to an individual rather than using the shotgun approach of broadcast TV. Advertisers WILL pay more for this. But they will also keep paying for exposure to large generic audiences, just to get new stuff in front of the masses.

The upcoming Olympics could be a watershed event - extensive real time coverage of simultaneous events via broadcast, cable and the Internet. Extensive VOD of events that have already taken place via the Internet. And sophisticated tracking to determine who is watching via each of these distribution venues.


You can UNSUBSCRIBE from the OpenDTV list in two ways:

- Using the UNSUBSCRIBE command in your user configuration settings at FreeLists.org
- By sending a message to: opendtv-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with the word 
unsubscribe in the subject line.

Other related posts: