This is Channel One

June 5, 2014


Screen Shot 2014-06-05 at 5.44.37 PM

From Jim Metrock:  

Channel One News held its first, and more than likely last, Google Hangout this afternoon.

It was a sad thing to watch. I mean real sad.

It was like watching the movie This is Spinal Tap, but without the laughs. In the movie Spinal Tap is a rock band that finds itself on the embarrassing slide to rock & roll oblivion . The band had once been popular, but aren’t now.  The band’s fans and paying concertgoers are disappearing, and it takes Spinal Tap the whole movie to understand the reality of their situation.  There is nothing sadder than a rock band on the way down, except maybe a youth marketing firm on the way down.


Channel One continues to claim “nearly 5 million” students in its audience.  That might have been true three years ago, but not now.  

If they had millions of students watching their daily, in-classroom TV show, you would expect a very large number of young people showing up for Channel One’s first ever Google Hangout (a service that lets a lot of people chat and message each other while also allowing people to see video of participants).

The numbers tell the sad tale.


c1 facebook hang out 24

June 5, 2014 – Only 24 “like” Channel One’s Facebook post about a Google Hangout later that day.

 A few hours before their Hangout, Channel One had only a handful of people “liking” this event on their Facebook page. This is foreshadowing a disaster. 

Channel One pushed this June 5 event hard on their Facebook page and mentioned it on their last broadcast.

So how many viewed the Hangout?


45 were logged in and viewing the Hangout at 5:00 p.m. ET, the start time for the Channel One get-together with fans.  45 is pretty pathetic – and that number includes counting “Channel One” as a viewer.  Also least one Channel One employee was also counted in the 45, Karen Knapstein.   

c1 hangout viewers


The lack of participants had to been disheartening to Channel One, but the three reporters Tom Hanson, Keith Kocinski and Maggie Rulli kept their poise. 

Although 45 might have been there at the start, I imagine many dropped out after Channel One did the unthinkable: they were late.

Ten minutes went by and Channel One was a no-show.  A no-show to their own party.  The blame for this probably goes to Cassie Hudson Channel One’s social media person.  This might have been her first Google Hangout and it evidently proved a little more complicated than expected.  

During the fifty minute event Cassie Hudson who acted as the moderator recognized about ten young people who joined the video chat.  It was a disaster.

What I learned from watching this disaster:

1.  Channel One will be back in the fall with a classroom TV show.  

2.  Keith Kocinski and Tom Hanson will be back on air, but Maggie Rulli didn’t commit herself.  

3.  Of these three reporters, Keith Kocinski comes off as the most likable, smartest, and most professional.  Throughout  the event he was thoughtful to, and respectful of, the few young people who participated.  

4.  If this company is confused by how to do a Google Hangout, they might not be the “digital content” people they hold themselves out to be.

5.  If Hougton Mifflin thought Channel One is relevant in the lives of young people, they were wrong.






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