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Why is local TV so far behind in video?

Remember the early days of TV when local stations were the innovators in video? The first color TV, the first live shot, the first live chopper… the list goes on and on. How are local TV stations doing now as we face the biggest and most important revolution in the history of video? Terribly. YouTube, MSN Video, Revver, Veoh are just a few of the online video sites leading the way in technology, advertiser experience, community functionality and new business models. Promising startups are combining video with classifieds. Newspapers are pulling in more revenue in online video than local TV sites. Videobloggers are beginning to build audiences in valuable local niches. And only a small handful of local stations are producing original video for the web that’s not reworked from TV. Or allow viewers to upload and share video. Or allow their video to be embedded elsewhere. What happened, local TV? Where’s your innovative spirit? Do you not see this as a threat, especially when you consider how the networks are increasingly offering their video direct to the user? Remember the newspapers…

Adds Eric in comments: “The local TV market has a working business model that they’ve used for a long time. Getting any organization to fundamentally change their business model, unless they’re in a state of crisis, which I don’t think they are (yet), is a very difficult thing to do.”

Adds BigTimeTeevee in comments: “I’m at a local station in a big network group, and many of these issues are exactly the kinds of things that frustrate those of us here at ground level. There are so many great things we could be doing to advance our video abilities… but we can’t because our corporate masters won’t get in gear, and they control the functionality of the site. Ultimately, any reasons for not doing it are just excuses, and they’re excuses that are going to drive us out of business.”

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