Breaking news: breaking news is coming to the underground!
You thought you could hide from Total Media Saturation underground? You thought wrong, kiddo! TfL have announced a partnership with European news company Euronews to bring live news broadcasts to underground stations across the network, beginning pretty imminently. You will be informed. You have no choice in the matter.
As you may have noticed, stations like Oxford Circus and Holborn have some rather fancy HD TV screens built into the walls. Mostly used for glossy advertising, the new partnership will see them pressed into service for news content – and even glossier advertising… It’s not going to be hard-hitting, depressing news though; Euronews are going to keep things light, telling stories about sports, technology, weather, business, and lifestyle, with both a local and international focus. Here’s hoping for an avalanche of viral cat videos…
The broadcasts will arrive on sixty screens, across fifteen Underground stations, including Green Park and Camden Town. Notice how these are all high-traffic stations, presumably to make the most of that sweet sweet advertising revenue. They’re planning to use audience response to target new commercial opportunities, although no one has quite explained how this will work. If you can’t turn it off, how does one express disgust? Staring more intently at the ground/your phone/anywhere else?
Anyway, they seem pretty confident it’ll help out with brand awareness and targeted advertising – you know, the super fun stuff. The plan is that the advertising will raise pocket money for TfL to spend on speeding up some other much-needed projects, like the new Piccadilly line trains, or the holy grail of tube improvement projects: air-conditioning on the Central line.
Featured image: @streetartphotographer