Basement to close, by Chris Jenkins - 26th May 2004
Telstra's BigPond is set to close
another of its broadband channels, with music
ceasing live broadcasts on Friday at 4pm.
in 1999, thebasement.com.au had been one of BigPond's
more popular broadband content channels, featuring
live video and audio webcasts of radio-like music
segments from a Telstra-owned Sydney studio. Thebasement.com.au
was available to BigPond subscribers exempt from
BigPond's download cap.
channel was a joint venture between Telstra and
content provider Chief Entertainment, owned by
Sydney broadcaster Doug Mulray and former Triple
M chief Hamish Cameron. Thebasement.com.au took
its name from the adjacent Sydney nightclub The
Basement, whose stage it used to broadcast gigs.
club will continue to operate as normal.
website attracted between 150,000 and 200,000
viewers per month, a level of traffic that Mr
Cameron described as "moderate". However,
around 600,000 users per month regularly streamed
content from the site, only 100,000 of which were
located in Australia, he said.
greater prevalence of "all you can eat"
broadband services in markets like the US contributed
to the high proportion of overseas users, he said.
has been a greater grasp of this thing by countries
that have embraced broadband," Mr Cameron
said. In Australia, "we were probably about
five minutes ahead of our time".
100,000 users was around a third of Australia's
broadband population, the number was insufficient
to draw the advertisers that the website's business
model was built on, Mr Cameron said.
wouldn't get out of bed for 100,000 per month
and we never found a way to monetise those offshore
users," he said.
Basment nightclub's stage would continue be used
by Chief Entertainment to record gigs for streaming
on BigPond music, Mr Cameron said. The nightclub's
website, featured as part of thebasement.com.au,
will also be maintained.
Entertainment would continue to develop other
streaming content for Telstra, including music
events, live broadcasts of V8 supercar racing
and AFL matches, Mr Cameron said. "The only
thing that has gone away is the concept of a 24/7
live stream," he said.
decision to close the live channel was made jointly
by Telstra and thebasement.com.au, BigPond spokesman
Craig Middleton said.
Cameron said then-Telstra BigPond chief Ted Pretty
has offered to build the studios after seeing
the live webcast operated by Sydney radio station
2WS for Mulray's program on air at thetime.
had originally wanted to build the studio at its
own offices at 400 George Street, but was persuaded
to build next door to the nightclub to utilise
its stage and profile, Mr Cameron said. The studios
cost about $1.8 million to build, he said.
end of live webcasts from thebasment.com.au follows
other content channel closures made by Telstra
June 2003 Telstra allowed agreements with content
provider BeyondOnline, which provided the RedKarpet.tv
and Krunch.TV and Endeavour.tv broadband channels
to lapse. BeyondOnline parent Beyond International
had announced it would sell the company in March
the time, BeyondOnline blamed the poor take-up
of broadband for the failure of its channels to
attract an audience. Telstra said it had "learned
valuable lessons" in broadband content and
was "still in the experimental phase"
of content provision.
stations lack of Internet vision, by Greg Tingle
- 30th July 2003
Tuned In, by Greg Tingle - 17th December 2003
provides only off-track live V8 supercar coverage
to top end fans
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