Now that the BBC iPlayer has been sensibly implemented in Flash, rather than as a proprietary Windows-only app, it turns out to be quite useful. Should I ever miss an episode of Doctor Who or, God forbid, University Challenge, I can catch up at my leisure.
But there are two major problems with the iPlayer:
- It is only available in the UK,a condition imposed by the licence fee system and enforced with IP sniffing.
- Programmes are available for seven days. Then they’re gone.
Both of these limitations are unwebby but that second bit of self-crippling is particularly galling as the boffins at the BBC, in their attempt to appear more
2.0, have added a “Share” button to every show on the iPlayer, prompting you to bookmark the current episode on sites like Digg, Del.icio.us and Stumbleupon. I’d be very curious to find out if anyone is actually making use of these links. I don’t know who should be considered more idiotic: the BBC webmonkeys for encouraging people to link to a time-limited URI or the people foolish enough to actually bookmark a resource that has just a week to live.
To quote Sir Timbo:
Cool URIs don’t change.