Once upon a time the Internet was simply a means of sending words around the world at lightning speed. What was called the Internet in the early days resembled today’s e-mail outfits and Usenet boards, until Tim Berners-Lee and his CERN cohorts begat the World Wide Web in the early 1990s. CERN’s genius consisted of developing the browser concept--a way of viewing pictures on other computers. This idea reached fruition with Mosiac in 1993, and then Netscape Navigator in 1994. Having added pictures to words, it was only a matter of time before various sounds and dancing images invaded the Web. Now radio, television, and video-style materials are everywhere on the Internet. What all of this will do to television networks and the recording industry is anybody’s guess.
GT2K is an example of this type of activity. Originating from Maine since September 1998, it is essentially a collection of Internet radio-style broadcasts covering most aspects of the gaming scene. The weekly shows cover all types of adventure gaming including computer (PC, Macintosh, and Linux), board, paintball, pinball, and RPGs. Each broadcast varies from ten to twenty minutes, and includes press releases, news stories, and convention announcements, followed by a feature story or interview. The operation features live broadcasting. The web site supports the program with past broadcast archives, an IRC site, and links to the companies and publications mentioned during broadcasts. There are also links to the needed media systems and advertising information.
It is somewhat trendy to refer to contemporary broadcasting as ‘narrowcasting,’ meaning forfeiting a mass audience in order to appeal to a particular marketing segment (e.g. males 18-25). Still, no matter how narrow modern radio gets, it is never going to go after gamers. However, the Internet can speak to the smallest of groups, and GT2K is but one example of this. Can Wargame TV be next?
Peter L. de Rosa
Note: The original version of this review appeared in Strategist 29 (February 1999):1, 5. The Strategist is the newsletter of the Strategy Gaming Society.
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