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TelevisionWeek contributing writer Daisy Whitney is blogging about the pinnacles and pitfalls facing viewers who want to consume television in new ways. Check in frequently as Daisy kicks the tires on the new media juggernaut and dishes on which services do -- and don’t -- make the cut.

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Trial and Error



Guest Blogger Returns, Gives DisneyChannel.com Thumbs Up

October 17, 2006 11:42 AM

It’s been brought to my attention that my guest blogger experiment yesterday may not have given the guest the spotlight he deserved. Of course, this wouldn’t be the first time I’ve been called, how shall we say, “controlling?”

So I let my five-year old son have another shot as the Trial and Error guest reviewer and I stay out of the way. My role is simply to ask questions and record his feedback as he drives the Disneychannel.com ship.

He sits at my desk chair and peruses the site. I suggest he click on the “Watch full-length episodes” link.

Up pops a preview in the video player for “Halloweentown.” I gotta admit, the Disney Channel movie looks pretty good.

As he watches I note that the layout is incredibly kid-friendly, with big buttons and images and background colors that you, I mean they, can change.

He scans the show images, taking his time before he clicks on “Lilo and Stitch: The Series.”

It takes about three seconds to load, but during that time frame, my son says, “It’s not working.” Talk about instant gratification.

I then urge him to try another show, so he chooses “American Dragon: Jake Long.” I suggest he hit the “add” button to add the show to the “My Favorites” list. He obliges, but it’s really that – obligatory. He’s content to just watch. So when I suggest he try one more show, he says, ‘I can’t stop watching it.”

Now that’s viewer loyalty.

I’d like to be a kid’s programmer. They don’t need to fiddle with the pause button. They don’t care if ads play. They don’t need to scroll through archives. They’re just happy someone is letting them watch TV.

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