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Rationality is the first victim of panic. And right now what I see all around me is a panic driven, knee jerk reactions by media giants to the world which is spiraling out of their control. The perfect example of this panic-driven move is today’s announcement from CBS and NBC. This is such non-news, I cannot even begin to work up outrage.
They want to allow downloads of their popular television shows like CSI and Law and Order:SVU. For 99 cents they will make these shows available for replays on (CBS) Comcast/ (NBC) DirecTV. CBS will allow you to have the privilege of paying a buck for watching the shows with commercials after they have aired. No you cannot take it to go like ABC shows on Video iPod. No it won’t playback on your PC. So in essence you are paying for something you can currently do for free if you own a TiVo/DVR, or even use one of the DVR set-top boxes sold by either Comcast or DirecTV.
What is coming from CBS and NBC is really a press release to appease the Wall Street. They can point to the news and say we are doing something, for god sake. ABC, at least showed some signs of machismo, and decided to try out a new model with Video iPod and iTunes. Clearly a missed opportunity for CBS and NBC. They could have jumped on the Video iPod bandwagon, and perhaps shown that they too can think outside the box. And isn’t there someone who can make Forrester Research’s Josh Bernoff from saying inane things that make you go … duh!