PublicTV, produced by Ten Alps, has activated a beta version of its website promising ‘fast and free access to
high quality government, public sector, professional training, and business videos’. In practice, what that seems to mean is a repository for public sector organisations to host and stream video content. Yes folks, it’s YouTube for public information films. Gulp.
The site promises free encoding, hosting and streaming for content suppliers; and will happily accept enquiries from public sector organisations wanting to commission video… which hints at their principal business model. Ten Alps themselves are principally a production company, and by reducing the cost and complexity of hosting, they’re presumably hoping to generate revenue around the content itself. Heaven knows, media budgets in government tend to be more generous, and less closely monitored, than in the commercial world.
There’s an encouragingly broad selection of short films to choose from, even in these early days, delivered in a combination of Flash and Windows Media formats. Clearly taking a cue from YouTube, you can comment on what you see, generate playlists, and see what everyone else is watching. You can’t fault the production values; much better than one would probably expect from within government, and delivered on time too.
There’s more than enough video material sloshing round Whitehall and its environs to keep the site ticking over. Whether there’s much demand for it is another matter.