Every Sunday, we recap the most important news of the week for those of you who need to play catch up. It was a somewhat slow week in terms of news, but nonetheless here are the articles we featured this week:
Studies indicate Google TV’s success lies with social networking
How Google TV can make African-American content more accessible
Al Gore reportedly sought Current TV sale to Google
A close-up look at the Logitech Revue
thePlatform to offer Google TV support for its line of video management software
Bing steps up TV search capabilities
Source: The Network Journal | via: SimplyGoogleTV
It would be nice to say we live in a colorblind society, but even though an African-American currently holds the highest position of power in one of the wealthiest countries on Earth, there are many who will agree racial barriers still exist to this day. Some in the TV industry feel it is difficult for African-American owned and produced content to find time on the airwaves. With Google bringing online content to the living room this Fall, however, some feel there is hope for a more diverse content pool.
Jeff Clanagan, CEO of Codeblack Entertainment, had the following to say about the possibilities Google TV can provide:
“Once Google successfully moves the Internet to your home television screen, it will open the doors for African-American content, producers and content distributors in general to create their own channels and potentially circumvent traditional network distribution and ownership.”
Clanagan also went on to dismiss the possibility of a greater number of negative portrayals of African-Americans due to the addition of internet content, saying there are already enough examples of that online without bringing TV into the equation.
The potential for more diversity does not strictly lie with African-American content, but a multitude of racially and ethnically diverse programming. Also, keeping in line with yesterdays article regarding Current TV, an acquisition of a user-provided content network could only further these possibilities.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter
Current TV, the DIY cable network where the viewers are largely responsible for the content, is not doing so well these days. Al Gore’s pet project is facing a lack of content, a lack of advertisers, and a general lack of interest from the populous. An interesting report has come out describing talks between Google and the former Vice President over a possible sale, dating as far back as 2007.
Supposedly, the price on the table was somewhere between $400 – $500 million, but alas, not even Gore’s close ties to Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. It is not entirely surprising that the deal never went through, given the time frame. Google had just purchased Youtube the year before for a whopping $1.65 billion dollars in stock, and at the time showed no interest whatsoever at branching out into the world of Television.
Which brings us to the present day, where Google’s former platform-only philosophy has gone the way of the Dodo in light of the hugely successful Android OS, and the forthcoming Google TV. There is no indication that Google has renewed talks to acquire Current TV, especially given the current troubles plaguing the cable network. Still, given the fact that Google TV is a mere few months away from launch, is it possible the search giant might be taking another look at making a buy?
The timing would make perfect sense, and would give GTV a unique platform for presenting original content. However, even a financial powerhouse the likes of Google may not be able to save Current TV. A complete re-structuring and re-branding of the network is needed for it to become viable again, a risk that may ultimately prove to be not worth taking.
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