The Internet enables you to watch television on your computer. This is no longer the dream of a futurist. As Web TV continues to unfold, Internet users will have increasingly worldwide stores of programs accessible at anytime from anyplace. Long-held visions of on demand television might well be realized in the near-term. However, this convergence of the Internet and broadcasting is raising many questions. For example, will social and legal factors constrain or even set back the realization of this technical development? Will the lack of adequate business models undermine the production of quality television? Will this convergence bring regulators to the Internet, and impose broadcasting models on Internet regulation? How can traditional broadcasting regulations, such as designating time periods for children’s programming, be transferred – if at all — to the anytime, on demand world, of the Internet? Will these developments prop up or undermine public service broadcasting?
The OII is organizing an Advisory Board Forum on this topic to be held at our Seminar Room, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford on 16 October 2009, from 4.30-6.30 pm. This workshop will outline possible scenarios for the development of broadcasting, particularly television, as the Internet becomes an increasingly accessible channel for its distribution and consumption. Participants will address the social and technical shaping of these trends, and their potential implications for the broadcasting sector, the Internet industry and society. Based on this discussion, the workshop will also address the role of multidisciplinary research in this area, and how Internet studies, and the OII in particular, should be addressing the many issues surrounding the Internet and the future of broadcasting.
Participants in this workshop will include members of the OII’s international Advisory Board, along with OII faculty, staff and students, and a set of invited experts in broadcasting and the Internet. Participants are invited to send short position papers in advance of the meeting, outlining key issues that should be discussed, as well as suggesting key readings or projects that the workshop should review. The primary aim of the workshop will be to influence the research strategy of the OII, helping its faculty and staff to determine the kinds of research that should be fostered in the near-future.
While this is an invited workshop, anyone who wishes to attend may contact firstname.lastname@example.org and their participation will be considered in light of space considerations. In addition, this blog is designed to enable a larger community to inform this meeting. Please post your own views on these issues, and your advice regarding directions for the OII’s research in this area. I am hoping also that many of the participants in the forum will post position papers as comments to this blog. [Please register on this blog in order to comment – we need to know you are a person.]