Thursday, December 06, 2007

Why I hate Joost

So I downloaded the beta of Joost, since I feel a professional responsibility to try these things out and understand what they are trying to accomplish. I came away from Joost profoundly disappointed. I spent half an hour or so watching the adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle with my daughter. The good news -- only two problems. The bad news, they are both deal killers for me.

First, the quality of the picture and sound was very good -- most of the time. There were these sudden glitches where the sound began to stutter or skip and the images would falter. With the enormous investment that has been made in this proprietary technology platform I would have expected it to work a lot better (at least as well as YouTube).

But the real disaster is that they seem to want to duplicate the horrible interrupt advertising model of television. We were tortured with terrible commercial for Coca-cola every few minutes of our viewing experience. Worse yet, unlike the sometimes artful way in which television has evolved to interrupt a show with a commercial (at a natural cliff hanger or break in the action) Joost's ads seemed to be inserted according to a schedule -- even if it meant that the ad appeared in the middle of dialog.

Attention Media Moguls -- I am not returning to interrupt driven television programming. And Coke execs? Your ads make me hate your product and your company. Give it up.


JC said...

Hm, seems like a shortsighted appraisal to me. Delivering HD over the web is only really going to be effective when our broad band speeds increase - which they will. The ad model is also likely to be constantly improved - hence the whole thing is in Beta. What you'relooking at is a TV platform for people under 23 - hence the next generation of high spending consumers. I found Joost a far better alternative to Youtube although that does has its place on the web for more amateur and 'on the fly' broadcasting.

I believe that Joost is only at the beginning of its journey.

Lee said...

Picking up on your comment on the current TV model (and setting aside Joost for a minute), isn't it odd that the reaction of big companies in lumbering industries losing marketshare is to do more of the things that people hate, further trashing their product?

In the case of network TV (and many of their cable brethren), it's not just more commercials, but three ad formats that even TiVo can't circumvent: Senseless cross-promotions and product placements, and the semi-transparent promos that run over the show on the lower part of the screen.

It's as if it's a battle with the (fleeing) viewers: We'll shove this advertising down your throat even if we have to trash the program you're trying to watch to do it.

. . . and cycle downward continues.