500 million Virgin Pieces!

Virgin TV

Virgin TV

No, before you inform the authorities about some kind of Virgin mass sacrifice in the woods of Wisconsin or something, I’m talking Internet TV…..calm now? Good.

So what’s 500 million the pieces? This is the pieces of broadband video content last year viewed on virgin, with the BBC’s iPlayer accounting for almost 20% of programmes watched!! Wow, that much! Yes!

This once again re alliterating the push of Internet TV as a forerunner in the way in which we consume TV now.

This is all coming with news of last months crash of Kangeroo, the joint venture between BBC, ITV and Channel 4 which has left the channels to rethink their strategies, with channel 4 following suit with an online version of its 4oD service.

Although I think the BBC is just cushy where it is….who knows perhaps somesort of TV integrated with the Internet might come along to help?….


Channel 4 Meet the Natives

Genre: Culture, lifestyle documentary

Time of Day: Thursday 9pm- 4 part series

Production Values:

The shos follows a group of native South Pacific Islanders and their experiences with different “Classes” of British families (Working class, middle class and upper middle class). A lot of emphasis is placed on their admiration of Prince Phillip and their belief that he will one day return to them and their island as a leader. It illustrates how other cultures differ from British culture, but one may pose the question as to whether we really do get an anthropological insight into their culture.

Channel 4’s success:

Channel 4 programming can be viewed as cult programming. It’s renowned for successful shows such as hollyoaks, deal or no deal, cult of the suicide bomber etc. I beleive that it is successful as it commissions shows that go against the norm and that don’t conform to ideals and therefore push the boundaries of thought. Inevitably it largely appeals to those between 16-34 years old.

Interactive Implications:

It’s website is very graphical and content driven. There are web spaces where one can discuss programme plot lines, characters etc. There are platforms where one can propose new ideas, upload your own films, documentaries and films and music. Moreover there is a platform titled ‘Origination’ which lends itself to celebrating cultural difference. It places real emphasis on being able to interact with it’s viewers and listen to what they have to say about current shows and future shows they would like to view.

 Key Players:

Kevin Lygo- Head of Channel 4

Joanna Ball- Commissioning Editor for C4 Feature Team

Adam Adler- Commissioning Editor for C4 Entertainment

Agil Ahmed- Commissioning Editor for C4 Religion

Shane Allen- Commissioning Editor for Comedy

Lastminute.com founder says TV is in a good position – if they react quickly

Martha Lane Fox, co-founder of Lastminute.com and non-executive member of the Channel 4 management board, spoke last night at the Royal Television Society’s Annual Baird Lecture. Here’s the rundown on some of the key points:

  • Technology is hugely important, and must work well, but the idea is everything
  • Know your weaknesses and recruit great talent to plug the gaps
  • Marketing and PR are key – put yourself about and include headline-making content
  • A good online idea is something you couldn’t do offline – eBay, Amazon and Google are all good examples
  • With on-demand and other services, television has moved from having viewers to having customers, and having to service those customers. Conversely, businesses like Lastminute.com have moved from having to deal with customers to having to manage content (often generated by users)
  • With the projected drop in ad revenue it is important that TV companies look at Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools – with on-demand you can see what users download; you can see what webpages they visit, what forums they post to, where they blog, what they are watching on mobile. This information is key.
  • C4’s move into radio is “a clever move” that shows they are “3-4 years ahead of the game”, “quite apart from trying to bring the Today programme to its knees”
  • Broadcasters are in a good position “if they react quickly and are clever”