This Revolution Will Be Televised

“I believe, eventually one day, TV will be by and about actual people,” a 1990s-era QVC executive Neil Walker, played by Bradley Cooper, to Jennifer Lawrence’s mop-hawking entrepreneur at the center of David O. Russell’s Joy.

“Maybe on computers?,” Cooper’s character continues, prophetically.

For some, ‘Live,’ Facebook’s foray into broadcasting has the patina of an attention-grabbing exercise on the 12-year old social network. Some are asking if Facebook’s endeavor is any different from predecessors such as ‘Periscope’ or ‘Meerkat’? Could it be evidence of Facebook’s oft-predicted but never accurate decline?

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Facebook ‘Live’ is the New TV.

Mark Zuckerberg isn’t the first to bring live TV to the web but he is the first to truly do it right. Soon, millions of people around the world will be able to watch shows created by millions of others, and interact with each other in ways never before seen in our shared history. A true democratization of the airwaves, ‘Live’ may send some people running for the hills. But it is also poised to send many more sprinting in every direction — to capture every second of it, in real time.

‘Live’ is young. Those of us in the industry are still essentially watching it, like a toddler take her first steps. But it won’t be long before we see her growing more graceful and covering expansive swaths of territory. Soon, she’ll be gliding, leaping, and spellbinding us all.

A revolution so often begin with simple acts by ordinary people. ‘Live’ gives every one of us our own 24-hour channel. What will end up being broadcast, and what will strike a chord, is anyone’s guess. But one thing’s for sure: This revolution really will be televised.

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