Monday, December 28, 2009

China launches ambitious Chinese Internet TV service

On December 28, 2009, China Central Television launched its international webcast television service with the domain name of (China Network Television). It will become the most elaborate webcast video service in the world with its ambitious plan. It shows that Chinese government realizes the immense international potential of webcasting.

CNTV offers five major types of programs. They are news, sports, entertainment, and two online video products named "bugu" and "xiyou". "Xiyou" serves as a community where users share their uploaded videos. "Bugu" provides video services including live online broadcasts, video on demand, and 24-7 replays.

The goal of the Internet TV service is to offer live web casting of all programs from CCTV's 20 channels. It will work to collect 400 thousand hours of programs created by CCTV in previous years. Meanwhile, it offers services such as program request, search, download and comment.

Tentatively, its business model will follow the CCTV model with state funding and advertising support. The question is the adoption. The webcast is only in Chinese with no English subtitles or English version or other languages.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Used Generated content (Video sharing) vs. Professional Video Content

The latest issue of Television Week's (Dec 17) article discusses cross promotion among video sharing sites. Veoh , Revision3, Next New Networks and are quoted as successful examples to build traffic from one another. This is a phenomenon discussed in the Webcasting Worldwide Book about the different business models of content aggregators and a media brand site. Most video-sharing sites are content aggregators to maximize reach of audience and they don't have offline media counterparts to support them. The way they can succeed is to draw audiences from everywhere and provide with as diversified as possible the content for one-stop viewing. Surfers are who they will get as audiences. Branded media sites have their own unique content and already capture some followers from their offline media counterparts. An article I wrote four years ago in Journal of Interactive Advertising discusses the two different strategies employed by media companies in providing their services online: Brand integration and brand extension. Although most of the TV web sites are still supportive as brand integration, more and more TV web sites evolve as self-sufficient online video sites.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Webcast turned local

Our department's alumnus, Mr. Mark Geyman, President of Ohio Biz Web Consulting, visiting our campus last Friday durinig the homecoming weekend. He spoke to a class and showed his web page that compiles all Ohio webstreaming services at You will be impressed how prevalent is the use of Webcasting by local media. We should be grateful to the many people like Mark who devotes time to compile and aggregate content for us consumers. I hope more people will know about this service.

With its huge capacity, there are two directions that the Web can go: Being more local and being more global. Both depth and breadth should be examined for the future of Webcasting.

NBC new business model emphasize the multiple media platforms while curbing piracy

NBC Universal's Jeff Zucker announced the various viewing platforms for its audience. In today''s Broadcasting and Cable, he explained the multiple platforms the network is offering to its audience. For anyone who might miss Thursday night's debut of 30 Rock: A viewer can stream it free at; download it free-of-charge and keep it for seven days, also at; buy it at and keep it "forever"; watch it "on-demand" on some cable and satellite systems; watch it on a cell phone; "in a few weeks" time, stream it at, the new joint venture with News Corp.; or even buy the DVD at the end of the season. What this means is that Webcast is being instituted as a regular part of the TV network's channel for delivery and that Webcast will compete with other platforms for the alternative TV audience. The new business model is whenever and however you want to watch or own the TV program, the network will give you options. You pay for ownership and convenience.
He reiterated the concern for protecting the content property rights. What is then the advantage of putting it on the Web? The accessibility and interactivity are the key to success in webcasting. The multiple transmission options (on demand, download and live streaming) that NBCU adopted meet the Accessibility component of the ACR model in the Webcasting Worldwide book. The only option that NBCU has not explored is push.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Seoul newspaper rides on webcasting

The City, Seoul’s sixth free daily, has gone fully multi-media. Apart from the newspaper and the website, the City has formed a strategic alliance with webcaster Pandora TV (786,000 unique daily visitors) to enter online broadcasting and will be on TV screens in the Seoul Metro system. Read more on the Newspaper Innovation blog of our webcasting worldwide book Netherlands chapter contributor, Piet Bakker.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Online Video Once Again a NATPE Seminar Topic

Today I attended a webinar offered by the US National Association of Television Programming Executives (NATPE). This is the third time in a row that NATPE's webinars is about online video content and business models. This shows the anxiety and interest of traditional television producers and managers in webcast content. What were discussed today had been covered and discussed in the Webcasting Worldwide book: revenue sources in addition to advertising.

Speakers of the webinar are Sharon Martin from MSN, Chase Norlin from Pixsy, a video and image search engine and Douglas Cheney, producer of Prom Queen, an 80-episode series for the Web with each episode lasting only 90 seconds. Their three cases show the importance of utilizing the Web's participatory culture and interactive future to build audience loyalty. MSN showcased three types of webcast content and business models during the seminar. One is a live event and now on demand as well: Live Earth. The star-studded concert series with purposes of raising awareness of environment protection reported served 15 million viewers and 50 million streams and is the most watched webcast event. Although these figures may have been exaggerated, the most important take of this event is that 97% of the ad inventories were sold for the site. The second one is an original web show content called Big Debate where visitors vote on gossips and trivial issues such as whether the visitor prefer to have MacDonna or Angelina as the mom. The original shows did not cost much to produce (low-cost content strategy in the Webcasting Worldwide Book), but the returns can be big when the idea is innovative and get to the heart of the audience. User participation became the basis of audience loyalty. The third example is use of syndicated content: Arrested Development from the broadcast network. The web site built around loyal viewers and created a community of fans of the show with multiple platforms to support the content such as blogs, games and messenger.

Prom Queen uses multiple revenue sources to support its extremely short webisodes. For advertising revenue, it offers 3 second curtain ads and 15 second of pre or post roll ads. Product placements in the webisodes are also used to generate revenue. The compilation sales ($9.99 download deal) with Unbox is the third revenue source. As the Webcasting Worldwide book discusses, multiple revenue sources will be the norm in webcasting.

The use of metatags and keywords are the key to all kind of search. Pixsy is doing similar things as what Google Video is doing, but in a smaller scale. I would say most video search is very poor in yielding relevant results, partly because the video were not properly tagged for search engines and many also use misleading keywords. Seach engine must move beyond the text-based description to improve accuracy in video search.

Online videos are taking up 1/3 of the Internet traffic now and continues to grow with increasing broadband adoption. As Business Week's Spencer Ante predicts, they revived the telecom industry by utilizing the bandwidth capacities that broadband and fiber optic networks supposed to do. The Webcasting Worldwide book shows the importance in understanding the broadband industry to the webcasting industry. But broadband only provides the infrastructure, what content do webcasters offer can affect the viewership of online videos.

Friday, July 13, 2007

The future of webcasting depends on video-sharing sites?

MySpace, the largest social networking site renamed its video-sharing service to MySpace TV onJune 28 to compete directly with YouTube. MySpace has 110 million users a month and YouTube has 57.9 million users. These two big video-sharing sites' aggressive development in online video offerings raise the question of the importance of these sites video-sharing sites on the future of webcasting. To say the very least, the increasing popularity of video-sharing transformed webcasting from simply another platform for media professionals to a user-generated medium. It increases the consumption of webcast at least on user-generated content. The competition of professional content and user-generated content for webcast users attention will be an interesting phenonemon that further increase the consumption of webcasts.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Internet Radio Silence Day and Web Video Summit - A Tale of Two Types of Webcasters

This week two contrasting events both of significant meaning to the webcasting industry happened.

On one hand, today thousands of other U.S. webcasters, turned off their music streams and go silent for 24 hours June 26th to demonstrate the "silence" that Internet radio may be reduced to permanently after July 15th, the day on which 17 months' (Jan 1, 2006) worth of retroactive royalty payments set by the Copyright Royalty Board are due. If these new royalties are implemented, it threatens the survival of US Internet radio industry. The new fee structure would change the basis of the payments to a flat fee for each song streamed on a per-user basis. Thus, in 2007, every song sent to every listener would net SoundExchange, a royalty collection organization with ties to the RIAA, $0.0011, regardless of whether the broadcaster made any money by doing so. The fees are scheduled to more than double over the next five years. The Internet Radio Equality Act has recently been introduced in both the House and Senate to save the Internet radio industry.

On the other hand, Jupiter Media, The media research consulting company, will hold its web video summit June 27-28 in San Jose, California to showcase the bright prospect of creating and distributing web video with topics such as video search engines, mobile videos, etc. Interestingly, the copyright issue is not touched in the conference sessions.

While it's not unusual to see the battle between established media and new media, the new rule of the game is copyright and how government's attitudes and media suppliers toward copyright will affect the content available on the Web. There is also the difference bewteen video and radio webcasters, the latter are usually smaller and not backed up by deep pockets. The Webcasting Worldwide book has discussed the implication of copyright on the future industry and researchers and practitioners alike must create a paradigm of the real meaning of copyright and how it should be pursued in the digital age.