Thousands of Peers

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Jeff Jarvis makes a good point about the Jon Stewart/Crossfire confrontation:

What's fascinating about the Jon Stewart takedown of Crossfire is not just what he said but how his message got distributed.

Terry Heaton reports that there have been almost 400,000 downloads of the segment at iFilm (which is how I saw it) … in addition to countless (literally, countless) BitTorrent downloads. This was a flood of viral distribution that came from viral promotion….

In old TV, a moment like this came and if you missed it, you missed it. Tough luck. In new TV, you don't need to worry about watching it live—live is so yesterday—because thousands of peers will be keeping an eye out for you to let you know what you should watch (we call that metadata now) and they'll record it and distribute it.

The really stupid thing is that CNN didn't do this themselves: Hey, we had a red-hot segment with tsunami star Jon Stewart strangling our guys with a bow tie; you should watch; here, please, look at this free download because it will promote our bow-tie boy and our brand and our show and give us a little of that Stewart hip heat. That's what CNN should have done. Instead, they'll charge you to deliver a videotape (what's that?) the next day.

NEXT: Sneezing at the FDA

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  1. Yeah, but if CNN put stuff up on video, it would be on that restricted content RealPass crap they have, no matter what Jarvis advocates. Then they’d say that that since nobody downloads it through that, so obviously it’s not a service in demand.

    I think quite a few companies just don’t understand how the value of their shows vanishes after they’re aired, not just because people are duping them and putting them on the internet or something, but mostly because they’re now ‘used’ goods. Some companies are now doing a pretty good job compiling them on DVD sets, but other companies, like Discovery Networks, are really waaaay behind the times, with their ads at the end of every show saying they’ll send you a videotape of that episode for 20 bucks. Maybe it’s because their shows are privately produced and sold to them, but it still seems old and dated.

  2. Is he suggesting people are using the term “metadata” as a verb now?

  3. The continued spiral to oblivion by mainstream media is wonderful. They’re like drunks. They think they’re the life of the party, everyone else knows they’re not, but like the alkies they resemble they won’t know until they hit bottom.

  4. I don’t call that metadata. I call that collaborative filtering. You can call it metadata, but I don’t recommend it, since no one will understand you.

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