Another insightful Cringely reality check.
But in my view Veetle actually does have many of the answers.
Here’s why. YouTube has those two billion downloads per day yet just manages to break even. Commercial TV has less than two billion viewers per day, yet manages to be a very profitable industry with at least $20 billion in annual sales. The question to ask is not why YouTube is so popular by why it is so unprofitable? It is unprofitable because most of the content is crap. It is unprofitable because distribution costs are still too high. It is unprofitable because the ad model isn’t clear. It is unprofitable because the average video is still less than four minutes long so this is not a medium for story telling in any strict sense. Oh, and did I mention that the content is crap?
Commercial or even non-commercial TV, in contrast, may be too dumb, too simple, and too obvious for the most part, but not all of it is crap. Find a way to reach the non-crap while preserving the best of traditional TV and you’ll have something. You’ll have Veetle.