Is It Really Big News That TV Folks Have Discovered The Internet?

from the only-if-to-note-that-it-sure-took-them-long-enough dept

A few weeks ago, there was a lot of buzz around Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, a short series of internet video, created by director Joss Whedon, and using a few well-known actors. We had a ton of people submit it, and the press went nuts over it. While I actually enjoyed the videos, I had a difficult time understanding why this was big news. Plenty of people create online videos -- some more professional than others. About the only thing that could be said for the story was "A few TV people discover the internet... years after everyone else."

And yet, now we're seeing more stories along those lines. The NY Times notes how a bunch of Saturday Night Live writers and cast members spent the summer creating their own comedy short video as well, and the story is basically the same: TV people discover the internet. In both cases, the push wasn't that "hey, the internet is actually a good platform for video" but the silly writers' strike had them bored, so they focused on creating stuff for the internet.

Again, I'm not entirely sure why this is seen as a big deal. TV people recognize what plenty of others have recognized for years, and it's suddenly newsworthy? If anything, the news peg here is that it sure has taken these TV folks a long time to realize that producing content for the internet makes sense.
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Filed Under: internet, professional content, tv, video


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  1. icon
    Chet Kuhn (profile), 13 Aug 2008 @ 6:18am

    I think you missed the story on this one.

    Michael, I generally agree whole-heartedly with nearly everything that you post here on Techdirt, and subscribed to the feed in large part due to your efforts. But on this one, I think you missed the larger story, which mike and Jpong touched on in their posts.

    The interesting thing about this uproar over Dr. Horrible isn't that somebody created content for the internet, it's that 'professional Hollywood people' created GREAT content specifically for the internet. Most content created for the internet so far has either been A) replayed from TV skits, B) not professionally done with this type of budget and professionalism, and/or C) not really that great. This content meets all 3 criteria, and that's really where the WOW factor comes in.

    The rest of the story lies in the economic model, and whether we can look forward to seeing more of this type of production. Is Whedon able to make money on this? Or even leverage the exposure to create another business venture that makes money? If not, Dr. Horrible may sound the death toll for great, professional, internet-only content for quite a while longer...

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