Monday, March 10, 2008

While you were sleeping.

Oprah changed the world.
That's right, the big-headed, leonine-haired media mogul did something that could sound yet another peal from the death knell of broadcast television. In a partnership with e-bay-owned, VOIP-pioneer Skype, Oprah, with Eckhart Tolle, conducted a simul-international-bookclub discussion which attracted 500,000 viewers and has been the top podcast on iTunes for the past week or so. Another session takes place tonight and every Monday for the next nine weeks.

Media traditionalists, best-practic-ites and Luddites have reveled in the fact that Oprah's experiment crashed.(Though its feed was 240 Gbps.) But Oprah is smarter than the nay-sayers (most of whom come from shops like Digitas who abhor innovation--these cretins are the 21st Century version of the 20th Century people who used to shout "Get a horse!") As the Big O writes, "pioneering this new platform will always come with risks. We will keep moving forward, attempting to break new ground,..."

So, there you go. While you were writing a spot or "crafting" an ad, Oprah was having a live interactive, international conversation with half a million people. Once again, the best way to predict the future is to invent it.

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