PSB goes personal: The failure of personalised PSB web pages
Keywords:public service media, customization, personalisation, interface, content aggregator, web design
Between 2006 and 2011, a number of European public service broadcasting (PSB) organisations offered their website users the opportunity to create their own PSB homepage. The web customisation was conceived by the editors as a response to developments in commercial web services, particularly social networking and content aggregation services, but the customisation projects revealed tensions between the ideals of customer sovereignty and the editorial agenda-setting. This paper presents an overview of the PSB activities as well as reflections on the failure of the customisable PSB homepages. The analysis is based on interviews with the PSB editors involved in the projects and on studies of the interfaces and user comments. Commercial media customisation is discussed along with the PSB projects to identify similarities and differences.
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