Monday, December 08, 2008

VoD & filtering

The BBC Labs are road-testing an extension to their iPlayer that allows for collaborative filtering. This means that you can not only watch 'video on demand' (VoD) programmes that you want to - when you want to- you won't even need to think about what you want to watch, because they will make recommendations based on your known preferences and those of like-minded people. And the lack of thought will actually make the viewing experience better.

It has the potential to change the way that everyone talks about 'choice'. There's nothing new about collaborative filtering of course, but applied to web-TV, it has the potential to dramatically downgrade the importance of TV channels.

And it may work better than most attempts at this kind of thing, because the BBC may be less tempted to interfere with the collaborative filtering. Amazon simply use it in a very risk-averse way - to push stuff to me that they're *certain* that I like so as to maximise the short-term profit.

I'd pay attention to what they pushed at me if there were any danger of a bit of serendipitous uplift -but there isn't, so I don't.

This may mean that different types of TV will be commissioned - aimed significantly higher than at the consumer reflex.

These are interesting times.

(ta Nico)

1 comment:

mikeovswinton said...

In my exsperience Amazon are rather better with music than books - I have picked up one or two soul and jazz Cds because they flagged them up and I'd not picked up on them elsewhere. May be the demise of Blues and Soul magazine has something to do with it. They are pretty poor with books, though.