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Video: Personalization and the Push and Pull of Video
Sea Change International VP Marketing Kurt W. Michel explores the difference between "push" and "pull" video and the value of personalization in push/pull live streaming in this clip from his presentation at Streaming Media East.

Learn more about OTT personalization at Streaming Media's next event.

Watch the complete video of this panel, DT105A: The Video Personalization Pipeline, in the Streaming Media Conference Video Portal.

Read the complete transcript of this clip:

Kurt W. Michel: Push video--we used to call that broadcast TV. Some people still call it broadcast TV, but for those of us who are into coming up with cool new names and buzzy words and things that'll get people's attention provocatively. In news media, it's called push video, and then of course, there's pull video.

So, what's pull video? That's video where you as a viewer make a decision about what it is that you want to watch. I think it began with VCRs, right?

Pull video began when people would sit down and think about what they wanted to watch on the program guides. I used to grab the TV Guide, it was a piece of paper and it had an old-fashioned TV symbol. And you go and you say, "Oh, there's that movie that I wanted to watch 16 years ago and it's gonna be on this week and we can record it and then I can watch it anytime I want to."

So, you'd record it and that was the beginning of pull video. And then VOD came. VOD started out as pay-per-view and you'd pay per transaction and now we're in the heyday of VOD. I actually doubt it; it just continues to grow. It's more of a growing swell than anything.

Pull video would now include live linear DVR and timeshifted TV. So that sounds weird. Live video as pull. How does that make sense? There are live channels out there. As you heard in the keynote this morning, Facebook Live channels. If I want to go watch somebody playing a video game on Twitch. That's pull and it's live.

So I make the choice about something that I want to watch that's a live stream. We can debate fine points on how that's different from broadcast, but I digress.

So the 21st century problem is, “Oh, we've got so many choices,” and we've now got something that I would consider to be a hybrid of the push/pull video problem. We want to be able to pull what we want to watch when we want to watch it, but we don't want to go have to look for all of the different choices that we have.

We have a problem where somebody needs to push something in front of us. So no longer do we have a pure push, pure pull type of world. Who remembers what that animal is? Anybody? No, that's a two-headed llama. You guys remember Dr. Doolittle, it's a Push-Me-Pull-You.

Anyway, the idea is to create a set of content that somebody can choose from, push that to them, and then let them pull from it.

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