Posts Tagged Hulu

Whats the Verdict: Is Binge Watching the New Normal? NBC takes the plunge!

Once reserved strictly for online content streaming platforms like Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix, binge watching seems to have gone mainstream, with big networks beginning to release whole seasons online. The adoption of the binge model by big networks comes precisely at the same time that platforms like Netflix are moving away from it.

Tomorrow NBC will release the the first season of David Duchovny’s new period drama, Aquarius in its entirety online, while at the same time airing one episode a week on TV. In a Hollywood reporter article, NBC Entertainment Chairman, Bob Greenblatt proclaimed this decisions would push new boundaries, while also giving the consumer what they want.

NBC’s jump into the binge party comes at the same time as other’s are begining to question its merit. On May 21, Netflix began airing its new show, Between on a week to week basis. Hulu is also questioning the model and is looking at non binge options for its lineup, and Yahoo’s sixth season of Community is also being released over several weeks.

At the root of this shift is the need to create buzz. Content creators want to be able to build buzz around their shows, that continue over a period of time. The binge model allows for much of this build up. However, once the show is released the hype plummets. Serial releasing of content, on a week by week basis allows for hype to be built throughout a season.

As big networks like NBC move to catch up to online content providers like Netflix, more and more shows will be released on the binge model. The implications of this for the industry could be huge. Networks will have to create more and more content. This means that season story lines will become much longer. This also means that Networks will have to green light more shows. If they no longer have to worry about the physical confines of airtime, networks will be able to produce more shows for online viewers.

The real question is wether or not this is what the consumer wants. Will weekly entertainment transition into becoming fourteen hour obligations to watch an entire season in one weekend? What implications will this have on hiring patterns? What does this trend mean for payouts in the industry?

What do you think the verdict will be?


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Didn’t I say this would happen? Netflix deal with Comcast–the monopoly begins!

Didn’t I say this would happen? Netflix deal with Comcast–the monopoly begins!

If you came to my panel on digital distribution and VOD back in mid-October, you would have heard me predicting media conglamorates joining forces and increasing costs for consumers. I for one cord-cut quite some time ago and freed myself from my $150 monthly cable bill, and could not have been happier.  With so much content, I really haven’t missed “TV,” and have found some incredible shows I may not have seen before because of the traditional time-restrictions of cable.  Alas, these days may be over soon.

Netflix and Comcast just entered into a multi-year streaming deal.  While analysts claim this deal will improve the customer experience, is anyone complaining about the need for improvement?  Outside a thirst for more current programming, I think we’re good… I’d rather see Netflix pay for more premium content than enter into a deal like this.  At least improved content would actually improve the “consumer experience.”

The article above focuses on the benefit to both companies–presumably addressed at stockholders.  But what about us?  A natural extension of this is increased fees passed on to the consumer.

Anyone else dreading this?




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Former Soap Writer Sues ABC Over Royalties

Sam Hall, a co-head writer for ‘One Life to Live’ in the mid-1980s, filed a lawsuit in New York state court alleging ABC owed him royalties. Hall claims his deal with the network included weekly payments so long as the soap opera was broadcast. However, Hall asserts that he never received payments after the series was shown on Hulu, iTunes and the OWN network. The agreement, which is included in the lawsuit exhibits, does not define broadcast as restricted to network television. 

After the series ended on ABC, the show was supposed to launch as a web series but after that deal went crumbled, a new 30 minute version of the show ran on Hulu and iTunes until last fall. Hall is claiming that he is entitled to royalties from the period after ABC. Hall estimates he is owed in excess of $50,000.

Do you think that “broadcast” should include webisodes and streaming in this case?

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