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How Independent News Video Producers Will Bypass The Mainstream TV Networks

Aug 17, 2007
In a television network the end devices are stupid, while the network itself is sophisticated. Control is exercised within the TV network itself. On the Internet, the opposite is actually true: an end-to-end deliberately dumb network with all of the intelligence concentrated at the periphery.

"To be a real-time video journalist, all you need is a blog, a camcorder, and a laptop with WiFi. How long will it be before our news reports come direct from local sources with their own video production facilities, in real time, over the Net? ... Classical TV and video news production equipment, requiring tens of thousands of dollars and a specialized infrastructure, is becoming a thing of the past.

It is now possible to use a laptop-Internet system for on-the-fly transmissions from remote locations for distribution over a television network. ... But what is most encouraging about this technology is how it can lead to new forms of distribution that bypass centralized broadcasting entirely, allowing for the creation and distribution of video programming from within a Peer-to-Peer (P2P) network. ...Web logs are another example of how people are shifting from passive media spectators to active media producers.

Now that a rich media layer is being added to blogs -- with the appearance of video blogs -- it seems that a viable alternative to centralized TV networks is emerging. For example, consider what might happen through the joining together of video blogs, Real Simple Syndication (RSS), and BitTorrent. This is a very powerful combination. ...Who needs a cable network's team of celebrity reporters, with their jingoistic coverage of "Operation Iraqi Freedom," when I have unfiltered access to images and testimony from the war zone?

The tools suites are appearing. But more than anything else, we need education. People have to learn that they can produce video comparable to professional broadcast quality using these inexpensive, open source tools. What can be more important to the future of democracy than giving citizens the ability to better communicate with each other?"
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