NBC vs YouTube

Terry Heaton has a good post up about the struggle traditional media is having with the rapid pace of change in the online social networks worlds.

From the post:

“This idea of limited access to the masses is at the core of the mass media model, and it drives the strategic thinking of the mainstream. In this restricted environment, the entire enterprise is built on the company’s brand, something about which I’ve written extensively. After all, nothing is more important in a mass market than a powerful brand, because manipulating the way it stands out is what gets attention when exposed to all those people.

And so, when media companies approach the internet, they do so thinking that the Web is just another gathering of the mass in which to drop their brand and message. A part of this assumption is a continuation of restricted access. If the brand works offline, the thinking goes, it’ll work online. And so, NBC pulls its copyrighted property from the popular gathering place, youTube and makes it available on their own site, thinking that’s where it belongs. They even go so far as to include some of the functionality of youTube.

The thinking at NBC is that they can push their numbers up by offering youTube-type stuff exclusively at their own site. This is a classic and dangerous assumption, albeit completely understandable from a mass marketing perspective. After all, exclusive content drives people to the place where it’s presented, and we’re all used to that, especially those of us who didn’t grow up on the web.

Meanwhile, I think it’s terribly dangerous for media companies who are watching their foundations crumble to cling to the maintenance of an idea (we’re professional, you’re not) that is causing the crumbling in the first place. What we’re witnessing, as Glenn Reynolds so beautifully puts it, is the triumph of personal technology over mass technology, and media companies that don’t embrace the possibilities found within this disruption will one day be on the outside looking in.”


About Daniel Davenport

Daniel is a digital media executive with internet and broadcast experience. Daniel is currently the executive strategy director at THINK Interactive.

2 Responses to “NBC vs YouTube”

  1. youtube is cool, but when you are ready to start broadcasting higher quality video in longer form you need to be using Veoh. It’s like youtube but with no file size limit and the ability to download your videos to watch full screen in up to TV qualit video (depends on the upload quality). Think all the tools of youtube with none of the restrictions.

  2. daniel davenport Reply April 10, 2006 at 6:04 pm

    Thanks for your comment.

    I first noticed
    a few months ago. I thought it looked good.

    How do you respond to Om’s post about Veoh stealing videos?

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