TV Un-Festival: Paul Cleghorn – Tape It Off The Internet

Designer by trade, made some screens of what he thought that a compilation of what TV was available on the web, and took a lot of user feedback and started a build from scratch, starting in March. Live with a new version launching in a week or two. Going to open up to beta users.

Core mission of Tape It Off The Internet (TIOTI) – like Wikipedia, start with licensed TV information, can add all sorts of things to it, video clips or photos or text description, fan fiction, production notes, etc. Indexing all stypes of TV. Started with BT because it was the only stuff out there, now also iTunes, Amazon, as well as Joost,, etc. Taking any format and gluing it all together.

Building a social network around it too, can invite fans, can recommend shows, use your peer groups as a basis for recommendation. Trying to get hte whole world of TV in one place. Still a bit hard for people to find what they are looking for, we are trying to smooth that process.

So look at a show, pull in licenced source, but let people add things, so there’s a photo gallery too, so if you saw these people at an awards show then you can draw in from Flickr. Build up user generated stuff around the show. If you find something related on YouTube, e.g. a spoof, or blooper reel or anything else, can add that too so that you build up a full resource.

Trying to connect it up with other services such as Facebook, using Facebook login and will pull in the ‘TV shows you like’ so you don’t have to repeat yourself.

Using tags such as country, and badges so that people can link through to, say, your Flickr page. Looking to open it up over the next couple of weeks. Has widgets.

Indexing stuff like Virgin so detect you have a Virgin IP and show you what they have available.

Being open as possible with user data so that people can take their stuff with them. Trying to cross-reference different sources to help the recommendation engine. Doesn’t seem to be a definitive TV microformat yet, so might make a new one or hijack one. And RSS feeding a lot of stuff, can get feeds for discussion, downloads, etc.

Q: Tivo patent could be an issue for season passes.

We’re not a recording service, we’re just showing information about TV, so we’re not doing season passes, because we’re just listing as many options as possible (unless that becomes unmanageable). But we’re not a recording service.

Q: Where do you licence the data.

From Tribune Services, mainly it’s EPG content, so weekly update with about 2 weeks of information. they have a 40 year archive which we’re using for our archives. Not doing a schedule-based aproach. Do want to skirt around the Gemstart grid patent. Better way to do it.

Q: What about the licensing of data that people put up?

We need to look at Creative Commons, atm, it’s standard terms and conditions, but not sure that’s the best way to do it. But that’s how our lawyers like it at the moment.

Q: You’re being respectful of other sites, but your competitors aren’t and are indexing more content. Is that a worry? E.g.

So we index them but we don’t index YouTube because there are two many cats. Not uch reason for us to spend a huge amount of time filtering big buckets of video when others are doing that. We want to be the metaindex at the top.

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