Internet Protocol
TV in Perspective
A Matrix of Continuity and Innovation

by Pyungho Kim (Dankook University, Seoul, Korea)

The telecommunications firms have continually attempted to introduce a new intel-
ligent television system for the past thirty-plus years by making the best use of
ever-developing information and communication technologies, changes in media
consumption patterns, collapse of regulatory barriers, and so on. Internet protocol TV
(IPTV) is the most recent version of such corporate attempts. This article contextual-
izes IPTV in terms of its history, identity, and challenges. Despite the rhetoric of
newness, IPTV is a replica of the interactive TV of the past, which has a turbulent
genealogy of its own. even with the interactive services based upon advanced IP
technology, it is not structurally different from conventional television as the medium
is organized following the TV model. In addition to competition, a contradiction
between the open internet and walled-garden IPTV will pose critical challenges to the
medium. However, IPTV is still evolving, and its future is not yet fully determined. (download)