TECH TALK: Video on the Internet: Niche Audiences

The real opportunity with video on the Internet is what the New York Times has called slivercasting.

In the last six months, major media companies have received much attention for starting to move their own programming online, whether downloads for video iPods or streaming programs that can be watched over high-speed Internet connections.

Perhaps more interesting — and, arguably, more important — are the thousands of producers whose programming would never make it into prime time but who have very dedicated small audiences. It’s a phenomenon that could be called slivercasting.

Indeed, the Internet’s ability to offer an almost infinite selection is part of what makes it so appealing: people can find things that don’t sell well enough to warrant shelf space in a neighborhood music store or video rental shop — think of the obscure books on The ease of digital video production and the ubiquity of high-speed Internet connections are sending the long tail of video into the living rooms of the world, live and in color.

Another way is to look at it as serving the needs of the long tail. This is what Mark Cuban has to say:

The reality of TV viewing is that people watch the same 15 to 20 channels over and over. They arent going to sit in front of their computers and look for video to replicate the experience of sitting on the couch or laying in bed.

What we did learn at, is that people will search , even if it takes some work, to find things they are passionate about that arent on TV. If you are into bridge, you will find websites with videos pertaining to bridge. If you are into Tall Ships, Collecting coins, whatever. The beauty of the net is that you can find any and every kind of video. Its the definition of Long Tail.

And those viewers wont care if they are watching on their PC screen, a laptop screen or even an IPOD. Post it and they will find it.

It is now time to take a closer look at the underlying technology that is making video on the Internet happen.

Tomorrow: The Technology

TECH TALK Video on the Internet+T

Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.