If you ask me – remote events suck. If you ask why – it is basically because they are usually live-streamed. Live-streaming is a technology which is great for democracy and free-speech but not so much for regular remote events. Let’s find out why.
Let’s start by remembering how we watched movies or talk shows 15 years ago. We watched it on the TV or occasionally in the cinema. Today we watch movies, talk shows, series with online services such as YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Apple TV. The big difference: we watch whatever we want and most importantly whenever we want. We don’t need to plan our day to watch a specific movie at 20:15 o’clock on a specific channel on TV. We can watch content exactly when we’ve the time – and we can even pause and resume later.
Back to the topic of remote events. Through the Coronavirus, we’ve unsurprisingly seen a shift from regular events towards online or remote events. The problem with current remote events is the exact same problem which is slowly killing the traditional TV: they are usually streamed live at a specific day at a specific time. In an asynchronous online world your guest has to follow your schedule.
Live-streaming makes remote events not an innovation but a regression.
The next step is to re-invent remote events. Event managers or planners must think beyond live-streaming (far beyond). Remote events should be on-demand. I want to attend your stupid remote event when I want to do so – not when you plan and time your event. This would result in an on-demand content platform. On-demand content is however not what a remote event should be. An event is more. At an event people with one same interest come together – maybe to listen to music, maybe to network, or maybe to intellectually exchange ideas.
As people are the crucial element of an event, it should be obvious that events should combine on-demand content with an online community. This very specific community should – through technology – have the chance to exchange ideas, network, or enjoy the event together – asynchronously!
This may be with the content being augmented with the community, it might be the power of virtual reality, or of new powerful chat rooms (which yet have to be invented).
Remote events can become a big thing – but only when it’s being reinvented.