Orchids and Brickbats for WOAI-TV

Walter Winchell used to play a little game called “Orchids and Brickbats” in viewing life’s happenings. An Orchid was awarded for what he felt was a good thing, while Brickbats went to those that weren’t. In the spirt of Mr. Winchell, here are my Orchids and Brickbats for WOAI-TV’s online “Media Center.”

  • An Orchid for trying. This is a creative approach to using the Internet for TV. You’ve given viewers/users lots of choices for on-demand, online news viewing. It shows you “get” the notion of the audience being in charge.
  • A Brickbat for the default “playing” of the main video stream without giving users the option to play or not. It shows you don’t “get” the notion of the audience being in charge.
  • An Orchid for giving access to material not seen on TV. It’s a pet peeve of mine that most stations simply repurpose their broadcast video for the Web. All this does is provide stations with the illusion of exploring the Internet.
  • A Brickbat for the page’s quirks with Firefox and another one for the technospeak used to explain how to overcome the quirks. Come on, folks. This isn’t strictly a Windows world.
  • An Orchid for the clean design. The page is simple and easy to navigate. Most importantly, it’s not cluttered with various links and ads.

This is a nice effort by a local station, and I salute them. Now, let’s see how they do at getting involved in the conversation that news has become these days. That is the true litmus test of reinvention, in my opinion.

(Thanks, Jim)

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