Altered TV States: How Much Do Viewer Really Want?

ESPN looks for the day when a real long distance coast-to-coast interview between, say, LeBron James and a "SportsCenter" anchor will be possible.

Enter holograms.

ESPN has been playing around with technology where -- in somewhat of a "Star Trek," beam-me-up-Scotty-approach -- an interview could "appear" as if were happening in real time, on a real, on-the-set location. This aims to give a more "real" feel to the viewer experience. But is that what consumers really want?

In the recent past, video technologists touted ideas like "avatars," where viewers/computer users created online animated-looking characters on digital platforms At the same time, digital marketers have played around with "push" technology -- messaging that comes at you whether you want it or not.



When it comes to hologram technology, one initial thought was that it could be the ultimate disruptive, guerilla-type marketing. Drive down the highway and see a hologram on your windshield for some laundry detergent.

Don't worry. Privacy issues are in the forefront of much media discourse today, especially those relating to behavioral targeting and use of personal data.

But the practice of manipulating "reality" on traditional TV -- which includes misleading editing in so-called non-scripted "reality" shows -- seems to warrant just a shrug of the shoulders from TV viewers. I'm guessing if hologram technology becomes prevalent there will be more gesticulating deltoids.

Media technology always seems astounding at first -- video streaming on your computer! -- later, it's taken for granted. After that, boredom sets in.

3 comments about "Altered TV States: How Much Do Viewer Really Want?".
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  1. David Scardino from TV & Film Content Development, September 2, 2009 at 7:39 p.m.

    Wayne, your last 2 sentences should be tatooed on the eyelids of every technophiliac in our way overly technophiliac business. Brilliant...!

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, September 2, 2009 at 7:41 p.m.

    Then it's not real is it?

  3. Aaron B. from, September 3, 2009 at 12:18 p.m.

    Didn't CNN try something like this during the election season? (Lack of success notwithstanding.)

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