Thursday, July 05, 2007

Watching TV without a TV v 2.2

Last week we looked at some of the videos that are available on-demand from, the service of Cincinnati Public Television. This week let’s take a look as other websites that provide local video programming that you watch on your computer.

Most of the local commercial TV stations provide some video via the Internet. One of the first to get into the field was Channel 9, WCPO. ( Channel 9 offers all of their regular newscasts on line so if you missed the 11 PM news you can watch it the next morning on your computer. The videos are available for one week from the time they are first broadcast. If you grew up in Cincinnati you will enjoy watching some of the historical videos that have been placed on the site. There are some vintage “Uncle Al” shows and some newscasts from the 50s and 60s. “It’s eleven o’clock in the tri-state…”

WLWT, Channel 5 offers video on their web site. ( While they do provide a brief on-line only video newscast, the offerings are a bit meager compared to other stations. They do have a display of the most popular videos making it easy to find an individual story or feature for that day.

WKRC, Channel 12 ( ) has several videos available coving local news stories as well as some historical materials. One of their experiments is “The Cooler” a fast paced daily quasi-news segment done in a hip format It is aimed at the young professional audience that is so elusive for local TV news programmers.

Over at Fox 19, ( the station has a full complement of news stories similar to the other commercial stations. Fox 19 is also providing video content to a new online video service provided by Cincinnati Bell called Z-Street.

Z-Street is part of the phone company’s ZoomTown service ( ) service. It is only a few months old and unlike the other sites discussed above, it solicits video from the users. Patterned on or Google Video, the videos are available for free viewing are quite divers. Some are entertaining, while others are just plain stupid. Essentially Z-Street is similar to YouTube ( ) with mostly local content.

Not only do the TV and Radio stations provide local video content, the Cincinnati Enquirer has equipped some of their reporters with small video cameras. The results have been interesting if a bit uneven in quality. ( )

Even the Cincinnati Opera ( ) is getting in on the act with video interviews with the featured singers of this season’s offerings.

Certainly watching TV on your computer has not yet replaced your traditional viewing. With advances in video quality and the availability of devices that will allow you to watch video from all sources (broadcast, cable, satellite and the Internet) on your regular TV set in the family room, the same blurring of the lines between broadcast and cable will happen between regular TV and the Internet TV.

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