CAT | Distribution
A recent comment in an article on CNET.com caught my eye:
“If I owned a studio, I’d make movie theaters pay me,” says Dana Brunetti, producer of “House of Cards” and “The Social Network.”
Needles to say I had to read the article. First note was that this comment was in the context of a web focused conference, so there may be an element of “playing to the audience”, but in essence the argument is that more online/web companies should follow Netflix (and Amazon, Google and Apple) into producing more original content.
With online and technology-based companies already threatening traditional distribution methods, the impact would be huge: “Once Silicon Valley can create content as well,” said Brunetti, “they’ll own it soup to nuts.”
I can’t argue with that. More original production means more jobs in the industry. (And yes, more clients for my day job’s business.)
What appeals to me is the push for “per program” content purchase. As long as the pricing issue is solved. It should cost no more (over a month) for a la carte purchases of limited programming, than it is for a full cable subscription.
I have to say that there is a lot of difference in the experience delivered by Amazon Instant Video and Apple’s iTunes.
The Forbes article, Cable TV Model Not Just Unpopular But Unsustainable starts with a putative outline of a cable business: essentially “keep hiking the rates, have terrible service”! Finishing with this “goal”:
If all goes as described, we should be able to consistently deliver customer satisfaction levels that rank among the lowest of any industry.
Now that’s not a business model I’d want to emulate!
In a world where we’re all trying to work out where and how we’ll make a living in the future, many wonder if YouTube is a solution. It can be, but you have to be in the top 100 channels.
While the money spent on broadcast and cable production is reducing, threatened by tighter budgets imposed by shrinking audiences in the face of more diversity in programming sources, it’s great to see that there are others stepping into the gap. Obviously Netflix, who plan on spending $2 billion a year on original programming, but there are many other original programming sources coming down the pipe.
Deadline Hollywood has the story Hooked Digital Media Launches; Will Produce Original Filmed Content For Apps where Producer Neal Edelstein (Mulholland Dr., The Ring, The Invisible) and his Hooked Digital Media partners are producing entertainment for direct consumption on small screens via apps.
Dan Rayburn discusses some research results from Conviva at his blog at StreamingMedia.com and they suggest that there are still problems delivering television content via Internet Streaming. Regardless, Netflix plan to use streaming to replace broadcast television.
Northwestern Law professor Peter DiCola, has a new study entitled Money from Music: Survey Evidence on Musicians’ Revenue and Lessons About Copyright Incentives. What’s interesting is the divided opinion among musicians on whether or not unauthorized distribution, a.k.a. piracy, helps or hurts their income.
My goal was to open the discussion, asking if it’s possible to bring scale to niche content — and if so, what’s needed: Great content? Great distribution? Both? And how is it done?
Dan Rayburn, has written a provocative post titled: Streaming Video Can’t Scale At Cable TV Quality, Will Never Replace Traditional TV Distribution. Essentially he argues that there isn’t enough bandwidth for the large scale events. He’s only partly right. (more…)