Friday, April 13, 2007

"Lifecasting"

23-year-old Yale grad and "web entreprenuer" Justin Kan is going live online 24 hours a day. Yes, he's wearing a camera on his hat and doing what he calls "lifecasting," which consists of streaming his often boring life in San Fransisco on http://www.justin.tv all day long for the last 26 days.

It's not the same as the webcam-type casts you've seen in the past where people tape themselves in their room. This time you don't really see the "lifecaster" very often since he's wearing the camera. You acutally see the guy's life from his perspective, which is somewhat of an interesting concept but not always interesting material.

I've been on the website and it's kind of fun to watch him hang out with his friends for a few minutes. I can't explain it but it's just one of those things where you don't want to watch but you can't look away. But of course it gets boring after awhile and I get tired of watching this Justin guy talk about what beer his friends should bring to a party that night.

The tens of thousands of fans Justin says he has may be addicted to the site because it's interactive. He responds to hundreds of emails a day and hosts 21 chatrooms on the website. He even used to take calls on his cell phone. How long can this guy keep this up?

The most interesting thing about Justin.tv is the technology he uses that allows him to stream live, mobile video from any location 24 hours a day. His hat camera is wired to a backpack full of gadgets that allows this constant transmission to occur. This should have media companies champing at the bit to get on board with this type of technology. And according to Justin, they are.

He already has two corporate sponsors- Zipcar rentals and Bawls energy drink- which he gives airtime to by displaying their posters in his apartment. He most recently agreed to advertise for the DreamWorks movie Disturbia (which, by the way, he's going to see tonight according to his daily schedule on the site). The website is currently playing the trailer for the movie; if I was a Justin fan I'd be disappointed.

He claims emails from other major companies are pouring in.

Justin better hope the sponsorship offers keep coming because he and three of his friends have started a company that is striving to make posting live video on the web easy. His ultimate goal is to build the Justin.tv site into a network with hundreds of lifecasters, each with their own channel.

6 Comments:

At Saturday, April 14, 2007, Blogger EJW said...

I just checked out the site. I'm sorry but this is so lame. I think this guy needs to get a life. And his fans need to get one too! Who cares what he is doing all day? There's too much of an emphasis on voyeurism in the media, but this takes it to a whole new level.

 
At Saturday, April 14, 2007, Blogger MW said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At Saturday, April 14, 2007, Blogger MW said...

Ron Howard and Universal should sue him for ripping off "EDtv." Then again, people thought "EDtv" was a bad rip-off of the "The Truman Show," so maybe Paramount should do something.

I guess it was only a matter of time...we already had "Big Brother" on CBS, and I guess a TV network dedicated to a P.O.V. broadcast of an individual's life is the ultimate, final step, but I'm skeptical something like this will find a real audience.

A friend of mine says he'd watch if they'd hook up something to Justin's limbs and fingers so you can control his movements...'course, some would say that's inhumane, but like they say in Hollywood, "it's no fun until someone gets hurt."

 
At Saturday, April 14, 2007, Blogger L.C. said...

Lame as his site might actually be, in the end it doesn't seem all that different from the millions of blogs out there that chronicle the minutiae of the average Joe's day. I suppose the only difference is the lack of editorializing that comes with a 24/7 video stream. Even a blogger who posts several times throughout the day doesn't surrender himself as fully to the medium.

 
At Sunday, April 15, 2007, Blogger MK said...

I watched about 3 minutes of Justin.tv and it was about 3 minutes too long. How is my life enhanced by watching this guy walk the streets and show off his sponsors? I respect his ingenuity - or at least his persistence - with this project. How long will he keep it up? I won't know because I won't be watching.

 
At Sunday, April 15, 2007, Blogger LL said...

I agree! Sooo wierd. Who cares!? I do not think this will prosper or find a niche in the media industry...at least I really hope not!

 

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