Live Coverage is King

Among the treasure trove of tit-bits Brisbane Times Online reporter Marissa Calligeros imparted last week, the stellar morsel she mentioned was the magnitude of live coverage’s power to pull an audience.

The realest test for journalists right now is walking the tightrope of speed versus accuracy. We race the lock like an athlete and require the same skills, technique and precision to deliver a worthy performance.

Does this elevate the timeliness news value above all? Furthermore does it initiate a NEW value of liveliness? I’m talking real-time content and interaction.

Ms Calligeros sighted one of her publication’s all-time top hits as the simplest video. Crashed-car footage panned from one side to the other, taken on the almighty iphone. Clearly it had the elusive concoction of what everyone wants to see.

Each of the news outlets totes “live” as a selling point and with good reason. Each year it’s live broadcasts which punch through to nearly half the top 10 most watched program spots – such as the AFL Grand Final, AFL Presentations, State of Origin, Melbourne Cup, NRL Grand Final. Each amassed 2.2-2.7 million views (OzTam Ratings, 2013).

Al Jeezera wrote the following on their facebook page, which outlines the strength live coverage engenders for an audience:

“To our audience in the United States,

We have been receiving thousands of e-mails, Facebook messages and tweets over the past few days about our video content and live stream becoming unavailable.”

Live coverage makes audiences put their lives on hold in order to read/hear/watch what you’re delivering, conquering individuals by thrill and anticipation.


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