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June 13, 2007
Old/new media disconnect

So Channel 3 (KCRA) should be commended for signing that deal with YouTube to put content on the video-sharing Web site.

But before you think that KCRA has gone all "new media" on us, take a look at the videos they post. Notice that KCRA has decided to "disable" the comment capability.

No, no, no.

KCRA just doesn't get it. YouTube is all about commenting, giving every single viewer the opportunity to weigh in on the news report just seen. Repeat after me, KCRA: "Interactivity."

At least KCRA does allow users to comment on its home page. And this comment, posted by user "Downstryke," says it all: "Your videos would be much more useful and interesting, and encourage community participation and solutions, if you would enable commenting on individual videos. For example, in your feature about abandoned houseboats, community members have numerous ideas how pollution should be prevented and abandoned housing should be reclaimed."

If KCRA doesn't want to have to deal with overtly snarky - or outright profane - comments, too bad. That's part of the "new media" deal, guys. You gotta police the "comments" section.

Meanwhile, we're a little discouraged that more YouTubers aren't flocking to KCRA's content. Its top-viewed video in the past week was "Author Shares BBQ Cookout Recipes," with a piddling 2,301 views. In a YouTube universe, that's almost nil.

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