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Cutting the costs of ITV regional news. Perhaps more accessible?

itv calendar newsI’m very interested to see how the professional media world is merging with consumer level media. Calendar News, part of the ITV news network, is using online tools that are accessible to everyone.

 

The ITV online news channel is basically a blog populated by videos hosted not by ITV but using Vimeo. Vimeo is a free video orientated social media channel a bit like Youtube.

I’m not sure what this does for the brand image of ITV as a big player, but it may be seen as a means of making the service feel more accessible and “ordinary”. I don’t have a problem with this especially if the journalism stands out as being excellent. ITV‘s great strength in Yorkshire is its approachability in my view.

The great news is that for any aspiring journalists, you can create a news website which follows this model and uses these very tools. The next step, I imagine, is to encourage the participation of citizen journalists in ITV’s news coverage – a step we began to take when my team established ITV Local Yorkshire a few years back but proved too expensive at the time.

Another interesting aspect is that if you have a Vimeo account you can get statistics about how many people have viewed the videos and for how long – introducing a daring competitive element.

Calendar News website

Calendar News Vimeo channel

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88 million video requests

Over the last few weeks we have been retreating to the dining room. There, in the evenings, we have been lighting the fire and luxuriating on the sofas overlooking the snow laden garden. Our TV is in the lounge, a room which we have largely abandoned during the cold weather and as a consequence we have changed our TV viewing habits.

Instead of mindlessly switching on the TV we are now choosing what we really want to watch from iPlayer. The laptop goes on a coffee table and we watch at our convenience. I must say that the quality of the online TV experience is close enough to the old fashioned TV box.  And it's not just the laptop. My iPhone is being used more and more to watch TV, and in spite of the screen size the experience is pretty good.  And here is TV Catchup which offers live streaming of the main channels which works excellently with wireless on the iPhone. In the morning I usually prop up the phone in the kitchen to watch BBC News while I am making the toast.  iPhone is getting 88 million video requests a month. Staggering.

Here are the interesting facts via C21Media.net

The BBC iPlayer "Catch-up service" is averaging more than five million unique users a week – registering more than 88 million video requests a month. The service's most watched programme of the year was "Top Gear". The iPlayer is available on 20 devices and viewing differs on each platform. Mobile phone viewing peaks after 21.00 and again on Saturday and Sunday mornings. However, Computers still dominate iPlayer use, accounting for 86% of requests. 

The old box in the corner is probably feeling a bit insecure right now.