Level 3’s CDN will be handling the streaming for Fox all four of the 2008 Presidential debates, according to a press release earlier today. This marks the second high profile win for Level 3 in the arena of politics, following up on the successful Democratic Convention coverage.
It seems that this market is tailor-made for Level 3’s CDN business. After all, it is live and therefore cannot be cached at ten thousand servers way out at the edge – which is where Akamai has its biggest advantage. And they have Vyvx, which can do the aggregation step, something the others don’t have. However, the first debate is in Oxford, Mississippi, a place I don’t think they have metro fiber or any fiber at all actually, probably only AT&T does unless the incumbent there is an RLEC. So I’m a bit surprised that AT&T’s CDN didn’t win this one. Well, maybe they did win the contract for networks other than Fox.
It is odd though that they would announce their coverage at 5:30 on a Friday afternoon. I think they probably got caught by John McCain’s suspension of the campaign and didn’t want to announce their broadcast of a debate that wasn’t going to happen. Then, once the debate was on again they didn’t want to not issue the PR, so we got a rare Friday dinnertime contract announcement.
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