It felt like it had been there all along, but broadcasting live video on Facebook is a relatively recent addition to the life altering app that has found its way onto almost all of our tablets and smartphones.
The idea that we no longer have to update the world about our breakfast or exotic holiday location simply using words feels like a historic moment but we’re already use to that right? After all we have Ustream, Youtube Live (Although that feels like it’s gone away) periscope and snapchat. So what does Facebook Live actually allow us (or more to the point, me) to do that’s different and moves us along the platform sharing world…
Well I currently use it in two ways, firstly I’m overseeing the use of the app to develop a student led commentary team that covers university sports at UEL. So far we’ve covered several sports played both on and off campus. The technology has worked extremely well and as long as there’s a good internet connection I don’t see why we can’t take the stream from strength to strength and at the same time encourage other institutions to do the same. (I’ll be posting a ‘how to’/our best practice guide soon)
Bringing people to ‘the party’ is the real gem of facebook live and not just anybody, but bodies you’re actually friends with.
But like all things tech does it detract or enhance the viewing experience..? In the case of the university commentary it definitely enhances viewing and brings in new audiences – you just have to look at the comments on the post. However in the case of the music event I run (Allsortz Open Mic) where i also use Facebook Live I’d argue that the human touch is very much needed and simply liking the post with an emoji isn’t enough – the audience needs to be there live too. I know I’ll hear shouts like, it’s all about perception not reality, but should we be happy with that status quo? I don’t think we should and especially not in the case of a live music event. It’s not to say that broadcasting live isn’t a good experience in this case, it’s just that it’s not the best… in my humble opinion.
So how else will we (i) use Facebook live, I don’t know just yet but I’msure something will come to me as it evolves.
Are Facebook doing another grand job at cornering the marketplace- yes.