: I had the good luck to go to the brand new headquarters of Indtv, the network aimed at young Americans started by Al Gore and Joel Hyatt.
This week, they moved into an old coffee-roasting factory across from the city’s new baseball park. This was to be eTrade’s HQ and they spent a fortune making it gorgeous and cool — but we know what happened to companies that spent lots of money showing off; it sat vacant for years. Now, there are just a few people scattered in a sea of sleek cubes. The first floor is a cafe and they plan to expose it and the control room to the street to draw in people from the now-sleek neighborhood.
I had lunch next door with Hyatt and Indtv’s vp for online, Joanna Drake Earl, and I came away impressed and eager to see what they come up with. They have not invented the network yet. They truly believe that the people will invent it. And that’s what will make this so much fun to watch.
They’ve started recruiting digital correspondents — DCs in their early jargon — and have been inundated with well more than 1,000 applications. And it’s not an easy application: essay questions and tryout videos. Joanna showed me one empty office filled with boxes and boxes of tapes. They’ve started watching them and Joel is jazzed by what he sees. These are the people who will invent the net.
We talked a lot about online and how it will mesh with the network; about blogs and vlogs and wikis and all that; about helping the citizens create great video. I didn’t go there to report on their plans and, anyway, it still too early to do so.
Keep your eye on Indtv (or whatever they end up calling it).