The failure of traditional media in the Internet era

The start of the 2010 F1 season reminded me of an old article of mine (in Greek). In that I had reached the following conclusions:

  • that the logical cost -in 2005- of a DVD movie (neat package, wrapping, bonus material etc. removed) I would be willing to pay would be in the area of ~3,5€, far lower than its actual cost
  • that I have no option but to “steal a movie” if I want to watch a new series in time
  • that I have no option but to “steal a movie” if I want to watch something not available in Greece (like Anime movies or series)
  • that none of the above made sense in the era of fast Internet, with Mbps of bandwidth available to even a mobile device, when every boundary to the information is purely artificial

How come the above came to mind? It seems that Ant1 TV, the channel who had the rights for Formula 1 transmission to Greece till 2009, decided to make an experiment and try to milk F1 fans of some extra cash. You want to watch the race and quals live? Terrestrial TV is not an option, you need to have Internet and pay off 5€ per race.

Now 5€ itself or 10€ per month (each month has ~2 F1 races) doesn’t sound like a lot of money by itself. However it is a lot of money taking into account that:

  1. Conn-X TV offers, which include a dedicated sports channel, a number of international sports channels, numerous international and local terrestrial channels and video on demand for just 15€
  2. Nova offers 4 sports channels (among others) with just 20 Euros per month in its starter pack

Given the above 10€ doesn’t sound like a lot, it sounds like real robbery.

You are just looking for an excuse not to pay, one might say.

No I am not. I am actually making a commitment here. If Ant1 offers me:

  • coverage for all three days of the event
  • no ads
  • 480p image quality live stream that I can easily watch full screen in my 40″ television set
  • decent bandwidth so that I don’t have to cope with missing frames or video interrupting
  • Aris Stathakis or another competent sportscaster in place of the IMO mediocre [*] Takis Pournarakis
  • all of the above in a logical cost of at most 1,99€

I will gladly charge my credit card and make Mr. Kyriakou a little bit richer. Otherwise, like most Greek F1 fans I’ll just him the middle finger and figure out a free stream.

[*] I am being polite here. My actual opinion of Mr. Pournarakis is much worse.

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One Response to “The failure of traditional media in the Internet era”

  1. mperedim Says:

    A couple of useful links:
    http://directosf1.lasextadeportes.com/ for more than decent image quality (this is official transmission and to my understanding 100% legal)
    http://www.p2p4u.net/watch/13682/1/watch-gp-bahrain-formula-1-main-race.html and http://www.bebinio.com/ch2.html (to compliment the aforementioned image with english commentary :))

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