I have from time to time lamented the tardiness of media producers in getting content in-front of my eyeballs. It’s not a case of being tight with money, although giving Murdoch £30/month for a glut of programming I’ll never watch is *too much* for me. I’ll happily pay for the stuff I want to watch as long as I can watch it now on whatever device I happen to have to hand. Until it’s made that easy for consumers the pirates will keep winning by default.
There was an interesting quote from the boss of Netflix in a recent interview: “The goal is to become HBO faster than HBO can become us”. Netflix is moving from being just a content distribution company to a producer of content. And if they can create content as good as their new remake of House of Cards hopefully the days of production companies being tied to restrictive bundle contracts are numbered.
The fact that shows can be disconnected from the broadcast schedules also offers other compelling opportunities. The BBC recently aired a number of comedy sketch show pilots which we only caught on iPlayer. Indeed they are now going to start trialling iPlayer net first runs of new shows over the next 12 months. No longer does the success of a show have to hope that it was picked up by enough of the 11500 viewers that happened to catch a random scheduled slot. Each and every viewing can be accounted for and counted even if the show is a slow burner like Firefly which was cruelly cancelled before it built up it’s cult following.
So the balls now in HBOs court. How exactly to I pay you so I can watch the next season of Game of Thrones when it comes out?