Grade to Step Down at ITV

23 04 2009

The news this morning that the Executive Chairman of ITV is to step back from his post is further evidence of the changing role of television.

The former BBC Chairman and nephew of Lew Grade a founding father of ITV is part the generation that presided in the golden era of television.   The early sixties through to the early nineties provided the most watched TV shows of all time.   The very idea of a TV channel is under threat with the web providing higher quality and varied means of delivery.  Channels have to be brands to have a role in future models.

In the last year ITV has shed 1600 jobs and is a brand that needs to embrace change in the medium if it is to survive.   Whilst the channel struggles to deliver it’s programmes via the web others are innovating.  Last night the BBC’s webcast of the apprentice had a live vote and a chat room attached where viewers could share their opinions about which hopeful would be the next to get the finger from Mr Sugar.   The BBC has also just announceed that the hugely successful iPlayer will go to HD.

ITV still has great products and brand equity.  Its place on the  digital dial is still valuable but unless it finds a new way to embrace the web its time is ebbing away.

What’s on the PC Tonight?

2 12 2008


Sky+, BBC I-player and TV on ITunes mean that we can watch programmes when we want rather than just when they are broadcast. We are now watching TV on PCs, laptops and mobile devices.

This means that broadcast TV, user generated content (UGC) and streaming content from the Internet can be viewed in the way that we used to channel hop. This means for the PR practitioner that there are new routes to market for video. Content is king and the viewer will watch what they want and not just what they the TV schedulers tell them to. Another interesting development is that big high definition TV screens in the living room will carry the same content as iPods and mobile phones. Will that work?

As the TV and the computer finally converge the opportunities for integrating web function with good TV will provide huge scope and opportunity for innovation.

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