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Blurred vision

How social media is changing the delivery of content

Content delivery has come a long way since The Beatles performed their famous rooftop concert

On 30 January, 1969, The Beatles played a concert on the roof of the Apple building in London for an audience consisting of their wives and rapidly gathering crowds of fans and bemused City types. On 13 May 1970, the rest of the world got to see the gig when the film Let It Be was released.

On 2 July, 2012, Blur played a concert on the roof of a secret location in London, premiering two songs written for a gig the celebrated ‘Britpop’ band will be playing as part of the London Olympics Closing Ceremony. Streamed live over Twitter to an instant audience of hundreds of thousands, a number of whom were able to tweet questions to the band between songs.

The similarities between the two sets are interesting (with both bands at the end of their communal lifespan – unless Blur reforms again down the track), but it is the difference in content delivery that is the most noteworthy.

While it took The Beatles over a year to have the material seen by a mass audience, social media has given Blur instant access to their fans (and, importantly, vice-versa).

Here’s footage of Blur performing Under the Westway (filmed, appropriately enough, under London’s iconic Westway overpass) during the Twitter gig. Content delivery has come a long way in 43 years…


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