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How a Decision Management System would make it easier to watch the Olympics!


On the occasion of the Olympic Games opening ceremony I thought I would share one of my pet peeves about this and other sporing events – I can’t watch them. Now this is not because they are too commercial or because the human interest stories make me cringe (though they do, often) but because the games are not streamed over the internet. NBC says it does but when you actually try and watch it you have to have a Cable or Satellite TV subscription, which I don’t. In other words, if you COULD watch this on your TV then you can also watch it streamed.

You would think that anyone funding the huge payment they made to the IOC with advertising would be keen to get the maximum number of viewers possible. So why do they not allow me to watch the streaming version and so add me to the number of viewers and thus boost their ad revenue? My theory is that it is all about revenue sharing – if I am watching it streaming they have to strike some kind of deal with the cable company I would otherwise be watching with. A relatively small number of “lumpy” or macro revenue sharing decisions

I believe this could be fixed with a Decision Management System focused on the micro decisions “how much did we earn from this streaming session” and “how do we share the revenue for this session”. With a system focused on using the contract rules to determine both the value of a specific session and the allocation of this revenue it would be possible to allow anyone to watch streaming at any time and then figure out, at a micro level, who to charge and how much. If there was any uncertainty then they could probably use analytics to resolve it, predicting if you were at work or at home for instance. By focusing on these micro decisions they could then aggregate up very specific revenue sharing results rather than trying to handle it top-down.

The point here is not to rant about Olympic TV coverage but to give an example – by focusing on specific decisions about individual customers you can sometimes change the game (or games). I hope those of you with the right kind of subscription enjoy the games.