Patricia Handshiegel

Digital Dish covers the ins and outs of an Internet executive moving into the television arena. Disher Patricia Handschiegel is the founder of Stylediary.net, which she sold to Stylehive.com in November 2007. She has a background in Internet infrastructure and technology business, was an advisor to Kaboodle.com (sold to Hearst in 2007), and has contributed as an entertainment/media business writer for Venturebeat.com. She’s also been an early visionary of professional Internet TV content since 2005 and is currently an advisor on several entertainment/Internet projects. Always an entrepreneur, she had a highly profitable babysitting monopoly at 11, lent her writing skill to students at 17 and landed her first published national article at 23.

She has also worked as a ghost writer for a national TV correspondent. At 22, she was recognized nationally for promoting the growth of women’s hockey and advised companies on creating hockey products for women. She’s been quoted and profiled in dozens of media outlets since and is currently developing two book concepts. A serial entrepreneur, she plans to continue to build Internet, entertainment and media companies, with the goal of promoting social change and charities. She is currently involved in the use of technology to help find missing and abused children, and has contributed financially to TheJoyfulChild.org and other organizations. She is the founder of Look|Shop|List.com (in development).


Digital Dish

Web TV vs. Broadcast TV, Part I

December 1, 2008 11:43 AM

I’m in Chicago as I write this, in town visiting family for the holiday. It has been an incredible time. As today’s Digital Dish is published, I’ll be flying back to Los Angeles (weather permitting—it’s been snowing all morning!), then catching another flight for meetings on a Web TV project.

The way Web TV is packaged is a little different from traditional shows, which makes this meeting an important one. As I’ve said a million times in past posts, I’ve wanted to create Internet TV shows since 2005, in addition to the broadcast project I’ve developed this year.

Having now worked on concepts for both platforms, Internet and broadcast, it’s interesting to see the differences.

Web TV is obviously a lot easier, and I appreciate the wide bandwidth for launching projects. The audience isn’t quite as built-in, but it takes virtually nothing to create and launch a show online, or to maintain a production budget. The market definitely has become Hollywood’s now, as producers and creators find room online for pet projects. That has meant the quality and creativity have been raised by leaps and bounds these past few months.

I, for one, love it. What’s going to move Web TV ahead is an experience that mirrors what users are already familiar with.

With the exception of past productions like “LonelyGirl” or “Kate Modern,” I’m not sure it’s exactly happened. It doesn’t mean there isn’t still room for talented amateur producers armed with a digital backdrop and a Sony Xacti camera. But it’s an A game more than ever now. I’m excited to see everybody rise to the challenge, because ultimately, this kind of stuff will spark Internet television forward.

As a viewer, the second that viewers see a host playing with his hair, making faces or rolling his eyes in an online show, they seem to check out. It makes me glad to see online TV evolve.

I’ve constantly found myself no less in love with the traditional broadcast process. All those moving parts that keep me up at night, the network executives who seem so hard to satisfy, the standards and the sky-high bar—I admit I secretly love it. It’s like taking on the black diamond run for a skier or snowboarder. You’re wound up out of your mind, but the run is still awesome.

There’s an expectation of quality that goes beyond average. For an entrepreneur playing in the TV space, it’s an enormous (and exciting!) challenge—even if one wipes out.

Here’s what I wonder, though: As Web TV slowly matures and potentially proliferates, will it make broadcast development and production any easier? Only time will tell. I can’t wait to find out!

P.S.: By the time I finished this article, my flight in Chicago was badly delayed. I’m now skipping that leg of the trip and heading straight to the other city I’m scheduled to land in. Ah, holiday travel!


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