Attention Television Executives

Television as we know it will be dead soon. Everyone will have a DV-R at some point and we will skip commercials, rendering your revenue source nearly nil. What you must do to survive is this: digitize your entire catalog of old programming (if you’re smart enough to have saved the tapes) and offer your own YouTube-style service in which you can sell website ad space. You’re sitting on a goldmine of over 50 years of programming you thought you’d only air once or syndicate for reruns. But we want that content on-demand. Especially the nightly talk shows of which there are so many episodes that DVD just isn’t feasible: classic Johnny Carson, Merv Griffin, early David Letterman in particular. You’ve got it and we want it. For example, I want to be able to go CBS’s website and search on “Mel Torme Buddy Rich” and find this choice gem from Merv Griffin’s show in 1978.

We want to be able to watch what we want, when we want. It’s your content; you control it. If you build it, we will come. So get to work. It’s your only chance to survive.

3 thoughts on “Attention Television Executives”

  1. Here’s an interesting article I noticed yesterday about Apple TV, DVRs, etc.:

    This guy’s argument isn’t perfect. For example, how do I know what TV shows I want to watch? I how am I exposed to new things? But he makes an interesting point about how this 60-year-old TV business model is being (thankfully) upended.

  2. That’s true. The one missing piece is, how to get exposed to new programming. Free previews would be a good answer; maybe the entire episode without the conclusion? TV and movies will be iTunes-ified eventually, though. I weep for the advertising community; TV spots have no choice but to decline. Product placement may save the day, but we’ll have to wait and see.

  3. DVR rules. I’m so addicted to it that I try to fast forward through commercials when I’m at home, where there is no DVR, during regular programming. I wish we had DVR for radio, so I could fast forward through the most annoying tanning commercials ever.

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