Jonathan Weinberg writes...
It's amazing what you can do when you don't have much money. The best innovators often produce the most fantastic efforts when they're doing it on a shoe-string. Look at Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, he didn't have millions of pounds when he started it, he simply had passion, drive and a simple idea for something he believed would work.
So the news today that the BBC's New Media boss is to stand down and move to launch an on-demand video service for the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 strikes me as interesting. Ashley Highfield has been feted as one of the most important people on the Internet. But he controls a budget of £74m a year. Surely even a chimp in a tutu could do some decent work with that kind of cash to fund it.
The plan is that "Project Kangaroo" (dumb name for a start) will become the Freeview of the Internet offering more than 10,000 hours of programmes. Now I've nothing against that, I love TV. In fact, I'm an addict as my friends will tell you judging by my preference to stay in and watch rubbish on the box rather than going out with them.
We missed this earlier in the week, but it's worth covering in depth. Bebo has announced its Open Media initiative, which it describes rather grandly as "a new vision for social media and entertainment". Translation: they're partnering with lots of broadcasters to distribute their video via Bebo's social network.
Forget juggling a career with motherhood. The real dilemma for today's high-flying females is figuring out how to go to dinner with their boss AND still watch Prison Break. This is what the suffragettes risked their lives campaigning for all those years ago. Really.
Okay, so it's not. But it is the subject of BSkyB's brand new TV ad campaign, which aims to show how modern women can resolve said dilemma by using the Sky+ remote record feature, that lets you set your PVR from your mobile phone. "Because you want to be in two places at once..."
It's great fun when media moguls go to war. Well, great fun for everyone except us consumers. At least, that's the case in the current stand-off between Virgin Media and BSkyB, where a squabble over how much Virgin should pay...