Ditching NewTeeVee for an OldTeeVee Inauguration


My name is Stacey Higginbotham, and I watched Barack Obama become the 44th President of the United States on my television. And let me assure you, I wasn’t alone. Om also ditched the newteevee experience over quality concerns, and several of my friends chose the flat screen over Facebook as well. Over at GigaOM, we wrote about problems accessing certain sites online, as users complained that ABC.com, C-SPAN and even CNN.com all went down at one point or another.

When faced with the option of missing one of the “defining moments of a generation” or powering up the boob tube, I bet those with access to a TV gave up on the web. This is sad, because, like Liz, watching my friends comment on the speech via Facebook was one of the most social experiences I’ve ever had on the social network; it made watching such a powerful moment alone in my home far less lonely. But the inauguration served as a reminder that TV has the power to bring us together in ways that the latest Internet meme still cannot. If newteevee could become as reliable (and as accessible) as my CNN broadcast, while allowing me to share the experience through the eyes of my friends and not Anderson Cooper, I’d toss my cable box in no time.
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Andy Gimblett

I watched it on wsj.com (Wall Street Journal) and wasn’t disappointed. I have a TV but ignored it, partially because the WSJ coverage didn’t have journalists commentating all over it, unlike the BBC’s (for example).

Eric Susch

Let’s face it. Television is better at broadcasting a live event to many. The internet is better at asynchronous two way communication. Choose your technology based on what it’s good at and what you want to do.


Old TeeVee. Are you kidding? Unless you are at the office and don’t have access to a tv, why would you ever watch this event streaming?


I couldn’t watch it online…bandwidth at the office was too slow.


DirecTV rules. I watched most everything – and recorded 9 hours of Hi-Def coverage. My beloved wife arrived home just over an hour ago – and after we finish supper and get a few chores out of the way – we’ll sit down in front of the flat-screen in the living room and jump from waypoint to waypoint so she gets to see as much as she wishes to.

If we need to rewind [digitally], we can. Watch a segment or two a couple of times. It’s easy as pressing a button on the remote.

Andy Brown

We tried quite a few sites at my office today. The streaming quality on abc.com was horrible right through the Aretha Franklin performance. Through all the issues others tried cnn.com (put in a holding queue) and msnbc.com (equally as bad as abc.com) at which point we opted to head to the bar across the street to watch it on oldteevee which had no issues.

For such a historic event this goes beyond oldteevee 1 newteevee 0. It makes you want to insure that you have access to oldteevee for an major milestone event b/c newteevee is not yet up for the challenge. Maybe Obama can fix that too.

Josh Catone

I generally choose “oldteevee” whenever I have the chance. The reason is simple, really. My television is a 32″ LCD. My computer is a 13″ Apple laptop.

I often “augment” my live TV watching by searching for related things on the computer. I was reading live blog and Twitter commentary on the laptop while watching the inaugural ceremonies on my TV, for example. Or, often I’ll look up player and team stats on my computer while I view a sporting event on TV.


MY experience was just the opposite, I tuned in to CNN.com early in the day and I had no stutters, stops or anything else until after all the main events were over. I was at work and people who tuned in later were thrown into a waiting room… I know because their video/audio feeds lagged behind mine. I believe CNN had some sort of priority throttling in play.

Beth H.

I watched on CNN with Facebook. I was bitterly disappointed at the quality. I missed much of the oath, completely missed the VP oath and missed most of the speech. I feel very gipped out of an American experience. I had a better time watching the Clinton inauguration on a Sony Watchman.


CBS had the best quality stream today. PQ was good and did not stutter or pause. I was disappointed with CNN.com. It seemed to pause every couple of seconds.

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