If you were developing a TV show about technology and innovation, you might want it to have a prominent online presence.
And that’s exactly what Luke Ryan at WHDH-Channel 7 had started to build for a show he was developing for the NBC station, “Into the Tech.” The show had a Web site, IntoTheTech.com, and some short videos posted on video-sharing sites like Vimeo. Ryan, an advertising sales rep for WHDH who also holds the title new media manager, gave presentations about the show earlier this month at the Mass TLC’s Innovation Unconference and the Apple Store in Boston. Ryan had shot and assembled a pilot episode, hosted by anchor Matt Lorch. The pilot featured an interview with futurist Ray Kurzweil and visits to companies like iRobot Corp., synthetic diamond pioneer Apollo Diamond, and a 3-D printing firm.
Ryan told me recently that he was talking to a number of big companies locally about becoming sponsors of “Into the Tech,” and that he hoped it’d air on Sunday mornings, right after “Meet the Press.” His goal was to have it on the air by February, and to weave together the broadcast TV show with discussion groups and other interactive features on the Web site.
But suddenly last week, the Web site for “Into the Tech” vanished. And when I asked Ryan about it, he said he wasn’t authorized to talk about the show any longer.
On the site, before it disappeared, “Into the Tech” was described as “a locally produced ‘emerging technologies’ television series and interactive online community. The goal of the project is to educate and entertain the growing community of technology enthusiasts, innovators, educators, students and interested professionals about the rapidly evolving industries of Biotechnology, Nanotechnology, Clean/Green Tech, Visual Effects, Gaming and Robotics in the New England area.” A great mission...
My sense is that the executives at WHDH got nervous about having material for a forthcoming show circulating on the Internet as it was being developed, and before it was officially green-lit. (Social media advocates might say that actually, that would be the best way to develop a show intended to connect with a tech-savvy audience.)
I called Chris Wayland, the general manager at WHDH, on Monday. He wouldn’t say whether the concept had been killed, or might at some point find its way on-air: “I’m not going to comment on it. Officially, there is no such show as ‘Into the Tech.’”
But there’s still this animated teaser for the show on Vimeo, which looks pretty darn snazzy:
About Scott Kirsner
Scott Kirsner was part of the team that launched Boston.com in 1995, and has been writing a column for the Globe since 2000. His work has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, and Variety. Scott is also the author of the books "Fans, Friends & Followers" and "Inventing the Movies," was the editor of "The Convergence Guide: Life Sciences in New England," and was a contributor to "The Good City: Writers Explore 21st Century Boston." Scott also helps organize several local events on entrepreneurship, including the Nantucket Conference and Future Forward. Here's some background on how Scott decides what to cover, and how to pitch him a story idea.
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December 9: Web Innovators Group
Demos of new mobile apps and web ventures at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Cambridge. Free admission; cash bar.
December 10: Fintech Demo Day
Short demos from startups in the financial technology realm.
December 11: Unpitch
Entrepreneurs and investors sit down for lunch, advice, and feedback. Entrepreneurs must apply to participate.