Broadcast Beat | April 2016 | NAB Special Edition | p 94| By Roger Franklin, CEO, Crystal
In 2014, viewers in the UK were gathered with friends and family to watch what is arguably the biggest event in he footballing calendar – the World Cup. It was England versus USA and everyone was anxious to see who would reign supreme, but for UK viewers the match will be remembered not for the action on the pitch but for the technical fault that caused many to miss the opening goal of the match. A commercial was screened in error while the goal was being scored!
ITV blamed the technical hitch on an automated system for screening advertisements and while it wasn’t the end of the world, it did leave the UK broadcaster dealing with more than 1,000 complaints and a barrage of Twitter comments from celebrities, all in outrage.
The words ‘technical hitch’ are used to describe a multitude of errors, but upon further investigation one or more people may, in fact, be to blame. After all, automated systems only do what we tell them to do, right?
Can we prevent this sort of thing from happening again? I’m sure that the person or people responsible for this particular mistake have learned their lesson, but the question should be more general. How can we, as an organization and as an industry, best use those incidents to avoid making the same mistakes in the future? With better systems and more automation we are trying to take the ‘human’ out of human error, but ultimately humans have to tell systems what to do. The answer must be in the prescribed processes and training.