Knowledge Bridge

Global Intelligence for the Digital Transition

Live video won’t save the news business

The Washington Post is the latest major US publisher to get its fingers burned launching a live video channel, reports Politico. Despite spending millions of dollars launching ‘the ESPN of politics’ last July, the service has been cut back to little more than a stream of pre-recorded packages and press briefings.

Like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Politico and others before it, the allure of TV proved too strong for the Post to resist – it also proved to be much harder than it looks.

The Post and others have learned the hard way that you can’t just copy traditional TV formats and put them online. Not only is it expensive and beyond the capabilities of most legacy newsrooms, no matter how forward thinking they are, people don’t want to watch it in sufficient numbers to make it pay.

Article by Peter Whitehead

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