Mashing up the Olympics

My friend Karsten is german, but lives in Beijing; today he writes to me on another matter, but adds: “What did you think of the Olympics?”

Well, not really entitled to do any sports commenting, but I did my best to kind of follow the games; however, I was on holiday (like many of my countrymen) and didn’t really feel like gluing myself to a television all day long: I would have watched the odd event but time difference was a bitch.

I would have needed an Internet-augmented viewing experience, not so much by the Olympics general site, but by my broadcaster of choice.

An Olympic mashup

Watching a live show on a TV set is still way better than crappy Internet video, but the ability to pick what to see is what makes Internet so powerful. So why could RAI or Mediaset or Sky – all three had major chunks of Olympics coverage going – not set up a site where I could schedule my day, deciding e.g. I wanted to watch the finals of Taekwondo because we had guy in there fighting for gold, telling me at what time the broadcast would start and in parallel giving me all kind of background information on Taekwondo and on Mauro Sarmiento ?

Instead they created Olympics-related sites that were totally independent of broadcast coverage. They had a golden opportunity to mash up Internet and TV to create something unique, but preferred to splurt out another “me-too” website competing with the bazillion others out there with no unique feature for the viewer.

Why does it always have to be one OR the other between Internet and TV and not one AND the other ? Am I so unique in having a laptop I could keep open on my sofa while watching the TV broadcast ?

Instead of the periodic hand-wringing exercise at how kids are tuning off TV and onto the Internet, give them a TV 2.0 (there, Alex will kill me for this…) instead of wasting money in useless lawsuits.

The funniest (or saddest) part is maybe they did, but didn’t tell anybody…

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