Online Television

Host of Epic Fu a popular online television program
Host of Epic Fu a popular online television program
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Overview


Online television and live web-casting are new ways for people to consume content in real time. All one needs is an internet connection and a computer to make the world available to them. These new pathways allow people to watch, most recently, the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament live as it happened as well as the Master at Augusta National. [1] [2] If someone is on the opposite side of the country and wants to watch their favorite sports team despite it not being broadcast on their television stations they will now turn toward broadcast sites to watch the games.

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Impact


This new platform has transformed the way in which experiences can be shared. One of the fabrics of human existence is the shared experience. People who have seen or gone through the same things are brought closer together on whatever level. The ease in of the creation and now expansion of broadcast events now brings many more eyes to events that one used to have to be halfway across the globe to experience. The world's first bittorrent powered live streamed concert [3] happened last year in northern Norway and was broadcast to a small audience. Now they will broadcast a concert in both Northern Norway as well as Bejing as part of two parallel concerts. The stream will be available to all those with an internet connection and will bring people across the globe together.
Broadcast sites allow for new start up shows with content ranging from comedy to classroom material to be broadcast at an extremely low cost. This not only takes away from television dominance but gives new opportunities to those who can come up with a great idea and execute on it. The web is a free space in which the world can operate and consume content. Bringing a live time structure to operate through not only changes the way content is delivered but also the way people use the internet.



Limitations

Free online television has many beneficial factors to it. There are also limits to its consumption as well as practicality. Unlike a normal television set content is not necessarily brought to the consumer. One must know the domain names of these websites and know exactly what they are looking for, if not they will not be able to find the desired show, sports game, or anything else for that matter. Many of the site have a few different 'channels' from which content is distributed from. Many of these are just links or phony set ups to get the users to another site. Sometimes even if the site is set up the connection is so bad it is unwatchable. Also in order to watch many of the these on a larger television set so many people can watch it at the same time in the same room one must have a slingbox. This device both cost money and must be set up.

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Costs


The cost of online television and live web-casting comes at the expense of traditional television as we know it. The large networks who own the rights to everything and refuse to let college football be played in the manner of a true playoff system for the simple reason of television contract money. Broadcast media is an ever changing landscape and the emergence of online television not only brings more eyes to the internet, but an even playing field for those who want to get their message out to millions. When the world of online television has already begun to mirror regular television as we know it. Large award shows traditionally carry with them large television contracts, i.e. the Grammy's, Oscar's, Kids Choice Awards. This has already been duplicated in the form of the 'Streamy's'. Broadcast live and for free of the night of April 11th the Streamy's is an award show that showcases the best of the best in the world of internet television.
The show starts fifteen minutes in. Just click the bar at the bottom. [4]


Advertising


The mass majority of online television sites operate free of cost. In order to keep these platforms free they offer advertising space. There are two spots to advertise, the traditional spaces along the margins and along the top and bottom of the page. Commercial like spots are integrated into videos in periodic increments either during live webcasts or if it is a recorded show they will come in as a standard television commercial. On NBC.com's webcast of the USA vs. Canada Men's Hockey final in Vancouver this year commercial's would pop in seemingly randomly during the game. [5] If one was to watch a clip from the Jimmy Fallon show it would start out with a commercial as well as end with one. Product placements in video's and internet shows as well as links to youtube video ads, facebook groups, email campaigns, etc. Google Adsense can place targeted ads on a pop up bar at the bottom of a video. [6] With more and more people shifting their attention from the television screen to their laptops and smartphones advertsers will have no choice but to follow suit. Wherever the eye balls are is where the money is and any smart business will have to recognize this.

Reach and Frequency


According to a statistics given by MiniWatts Marketing group in 2009 1.8 billion people use the internet. [7] In an article written by CNN.com dated February 2009, Americans alone watch 14.3 billion online videos that preceding December. [8] That number is growing rapidly and with massive sites like Hulu.com seeing an overall increase in viewing time that only means more is to coming. In fact Hulu 's viewership is at an all time high. [9] The gradual shift to the online television format is inching closer mainly because it is more convenient and accessible than regular cable television. People are watching television within their personal schedule's more often the concept of primetime television is on its way out. Justin.tv recently came out with an iphone application allowing live streaming video right onto people's cell phones. [10] This only adds to the accessibility of online television also being free gives it a leg up on paid subscriptions being sold by 'regular' television companies.





Audience Quallities, Responsiveness and Scheduling


People instinctively want to live on their terms and on a schedule that suits their needs, wants and interests. Online television is only going to get bigger and the data the collected supports this. [11] Online television is easy to use, can be used at any time, extremely accessible, uber specific to the viewer and most importantly its free. All one needs is an internet connection. These factors all contribute to the rapid growth this platform has seen and will continue to see in the future. People's eyes are shifting to their computer screen rather than their televisions more and more.

-An example of a user of justin.tv:
Guy loses to himself in a starring contest


Epic Fu: Top internet show, content is based on Music and Film

EPIC FU (HD)
  • Must-Have Travel Apps! Mar 28, 2011
    What apps should you download before you travel? This episode highlights those you shouldn't leave home without. From planes, trains and apps that keep you in the know. What are some of your favorite must-have apps? Let us kn...
  • Do You Want to Play a Game? Jan 24, 2011
    What will gaming on-the-go look like in the coming years? Will our daily routines be made into games, will the places we visit become virtual worlds we can play in, will we each have our own personal holodecks? Let us know wh...


References

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  1. ^ Espn3.com
  2. ^ Masters.com
  3. ^ Torrent Freak
  4. ^ Ustream
  5. ^ NBC Olympics
  6. ^ Google Adsense
  7. ^ MiniWatts Marketing Group
  8. ^ CNN
  9. ^ Mashable
  10. ^ Justin.tv
  11. ^ ComScore