This column appeared Dec. 16, 2000, in the Online Journalism Review. Here’s the version on the OJR site.
Is broadband news ready for prime time? Not entirely, but it’s getting there fast.
Multimedia journalists who assembled recently at CNET in San Francisco for a panel discussion on broadband seemed to collectively say: We’ve come a long way, we’ve got a long way to go, but today — right now — many online content sites are serving up a richer, more satisfying news experience for consumers.
Michael Silberman, executive editor of MSNBC.com, observed that on election night, fully 20 percent of the site’s 5.5 million visitors went to a video page to watch a video stream of election coverage, such as concession and acceptance speeches from around the country. That’s more than a million people who chose the Web over watching the coverage on their television sets. “That, to me, is a real sign that broadband has arrived,” he said.