Saturday, September 16, 2006

Network Disconnect

Transition in your approach to your business model and integrating new technology are tricky to pull off in business as the unexpected is usually the most common problem you will encounter. The Mountain West Conference and Big Sky Conference are both learning this lesson hand.

Big Troubled Sky

On of the under appreciated aspects of the Internet revolution is the ability to buy and sell products of limited appeal. Your local Wal Mart while carrying a wide variety of merchandise has probably come up wanting in an area of great interest to you and chances are with a few minutes exactly what you wanted was found online. With addition of podcasts to this network, media can added as another specialty product made available by the greatest invention of the 20th century. Given this background Big Sky has gone with a novel approach to the distribution of their football games. With little limited demand for the product the conference did what many small specialty businesses have done use the Internet as the distribution channel. The issue for this idea is what happens if too may of the curious show up for your grand opening and overwhelm your bandwidth.

Nearly 17,000 visitors logged on to the Web Site last week with close to 1,500 watching all or part of the five football games…

“Our first week of football certainly didn’t go as smoothly as we hoped,’’ said Big Sky Conference Commissioner Doug Fullerton. “As we looked to develop, we knew that we would run into some technical issues along the way, both on campus and in the streaming technology.

This novel idea bears watching but it must be remembered that until September 11, 2006 the service was free which could account to considerable amount of the traffic. Others in college football must be aware of the opportunity that is channel holds and be ready to act when the technology matures.

The mtn. has fans in a tizzy

Grocery shelves at your local grocery store offer an excellent model to describe the problems that the Mountain West is having getting their new cable network off the ground. As large as grocery store have grown the space on the shelves is finite and are a battleground where the big boys like Proctor and Gamble and General Mills rule with the little guy struggling not the be squeezed out. The Mountain West seems to have had the idea that their product would automatically get distribution on the limited space on the cable and satellite dial with fans are surprised at the lack of progress. MWC is not the Bigger 10 and there is still the issue of filling up the hours.

Reference blog entries
Conference Networks


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