The Great Connected Television Debate: David Brennan (Media Native) on The End Of Television As We Know It

David Brennan, Founder of Media Native consultancy

During the IBC 2012 session ‘The Great Connected Television Debate: Will The Internet Be The End Of Television As We Know It? (IBC 2012)’ two teams were  speaking for and against this will debate whether the emergence of video devices and displays connected directly to data networks will make traditional television channels redundant and obsolete.

Below a summary of Mr. Brennan’s perspective during ‘The Great Connected Television Debate: Will The Internet Be The End Of Television As We Know It’ during IBC 2012.

David Brennan from Media Natives on the end of television at IBC 2012

David Brennan was Research and Strategy Director at Thinkbox from its launch in 2006 until August 2011, when he set up his own media consultancy – Media Native – specialising in the role of TV in the communications mix in the 21st Century.

It’s not about technology, but what people do with it

Mr. Brennan argues that throughout the years, TV has shown an incredible amount of resilience against new technologies often deployed as disruptions. While other speakers were talking about technology itself, David Brennan wants to focus on what technologies can do and what people want to do with it. Record viewing levels, records engagement with content and ads and record advertising revenues have sustained TV throughout the years. Instead of replacing TV, the disruptive technologies that were introduced have been adopted within the TV landscape and enhanced response, distribution, and promotional channels.

It’s not the death of advertising, schedules or Pay TV

So there’s no death of TV advertising, broadcast schedules, shared viewing or pay TV since all those so called competitive technologies became mainstream.Therefore, channel brands will stay and become even more important with connected TV. Connected TV is about better Television, providing more content if you look for it, something that most TV viewers aren’t.

Lean back and relax

Brennan argues that with television, choice is moved to the background. People want to lean back, relax and become immersed with the content provided on the TV by the channels. Channels will be the ideal navigational aid in a connected world with too much choice. People understand channel brands which makes choices what to watch so much simpler. It’s a guarantee of quality.

What is on now is of supreme higher value

Another important aspect that will save the channel brand is the importance of now. Why watch yesterday’s programs when there is still so much to watch right now. It’s a big mistake in the TV world to believe that content remains it’s value following initial transmission. What is on now is of supreme higher value than to watch it later on demand. With the importance of now, channel brands will become even more important in the selection process.

Channels support compromise

Around 70% of the TV viewing in developed markets is shared, so the personalized and individual nature of connected TV doesn’t really work for traditional television. It’s more about compromises about what to watch and that  everyone wants to see. Channel brands have an important role in supporting this compromise.

Also read the perspectives of the other speakers during the great connected television debate at IBC 2012

Saul Berman, IBM

Saul Berman is Partner & Vice President, Global Strategy Consulting Leader & Innovation and Growth Services Leader at IBM Global Business Services. Mr. Berman wrote a paper in 2005 called ‘The End of Television as we know it’ (which served as the inspiration for this blog during my university courses in new media & television).

Read more about Mr. Berman’s perspective on The End of Television as we know it.

Jon Honecutt, Discovery

Jon Honeycutt is EVP and COO for Discovery Networks International. He argues that people have always been talking about the death of TV industry or the death of linear channels. And although the industry has been through changes when free terrestrial was joined by paid cable and the analog signal became digital.

Read more about Mr. Honeycutt’s perspective on The End of Television as we know it.

Nick Thexton, Cisco

Nick Thexton is CTO for the Service Provider Video Technology Group at Cisco in the UK. He most recently served as SVP and CTO at NDS before the acquisition of the company by Cisco this year. Het argues that it’s the channel that is changing and has to go through a transformative process, and that some of the channels will fail.

Read more about Mr. Thexton’s perspective on The End of Television as we know it.

Anthony Rose, Zeebox

Anthony Rose is Co-founder and CTO of Zeebox, a new platform that turns live TV into a two-way, social and interactive viewing experience on the seconds screen. Previously he headed up BBC iPlayer from 2007 to 2010, taking it from pre-launch to major success story.

Read more about Mr. Rose’s perspective on The End of Television as we know it.

Nigel Walley, Decipher

Nigel Walley is Managing Director of Decipher the media strategy consultancy, and Chairman of the Decipher Group of companies. Since founding Decipher in 1998, he has worked on interactive media and technology projects for a wide range of clients including NTL, Telewest, ITV, the BBC, Sky, UKTV, Channel 4, Sony, the UK Govt (DTI), and Viacom.

Read more about Mr. Walley’s perspective on The End of Television as we know it.

 

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