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  • Mar 5th, 2019 @ 5:47pm

    Interesting times.

    By this time next year, both Disney and AT&T will have launched their Netflix/Amazon competitors, maybe Apple as well, and we'll get to see the goods. My quatloos say Disney will succeed, AT&T mmmmmaybe, Apple forget it. The benefitter of all this could be CBS All Access. To succeed, they need a couple of major competitors to fall on their faces. They just might get their wish.

  • Feb 15th, 2019 @ 11:18am

    Junk science

    This study is just another example of junk science. Are the movies with pre release piracy the same movies as post-release?

    If you actually wanted to test the effects of pre and post release piracy you would have to test the same movie in both cases. Otherwise it’s possible that the types of movies that get pre release piracy are different than the types that get post release piracy, and the difference is due the different movie types,

  • Jan 10th, 2019 @ 5:06pm

    Re: The 'Turnabout is fair play' test

    Yep that's my standard too. Let individual countries decide how much they actually believe in free speech. I'd rather stick with the American valuation and not be bothered with how other countries' value free speech. Do your own thing, just don't bother us about it.

  • Jan 7th, 2019 @ 11:59am

    (untitled comment)

    If this guy had any sense, he'd be touting the fact that his photos are so hot, Walmart chose them for their amazing profit-making potential. If he can't figure out how to parlay this unexpected PR windfall into more money, he's in the wrong business. Or any business. If you work for yourself, you have to learn how to use PR to get more work.

  • Jan 5th, 2019 @ 12:30pm

    (untitled comment)

    We're watching the beginning of the death throes of the cable industry, at least as far as content is concerned. They will have to ratchet back to just being ISPs, and that will be a nasty shock compared with what they're used to. And then 5G hits and delivers another shock.

    Dying beasts tend to lash out chaotically. This will get worse before its all over.

  • Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:22pm

    Re: This is odd because

    Think about that: a questionnaire for streaming? If Netflix wants to know what you watch, when, why, how - they just download the data from their banks of computers. They don't need you to tell them a damn thing. They can see your behavior. They know what you are doing better than you know.

    The fact that Nielsens has to rely on a friggen questionnaire (hahahahaha) reveals just how screwed they are.

  • Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:20pm

    Re: Someone needs help with remedial counting

    That sentence means, Netflix knows exactly what you are doing and when you pause a show to go to the bathroom, and when you start it back up, etc. Every little thing you do, they see.

    But Netflix isn't going to let Nielsens know any of this. Why should they? So it's a lot more difficult - for Nielsens. They're basically screwed now.

  • Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:18pm

    Re: Ha Ha Ha

    Yeah everyone's doing that. Disney, Netflix, Amazon. Maybe AT&T. Maybe look at whatever Apple has going. Hulu will be owned 100% by Disney or die. Comcast and CBS will be driven out of the content biz. Comcast will become just an ISP and CBS will merge with Viacom, struggle for a while and get sold off to one of the winners I mentioned earlier.

  • Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:16pm


    Well, "they" is not a monolithic entity that can say "hey there's too many of us, you and that other guy, go away."

    No, they all think they will grab the brass ring. And they don't know that they can't yet. Some of them, like Disney, almost certainly can. Some, like Apple and AT&T, have a shot. Some, like CBS and Comcast, are screwed but corporations don't like to admit they are screwed because then the shareholders wonder why they are paying the big bucks to those idiots in the executive suite who let Netflix steal their business.

    The losers can only be dragged out of this feet first. So we wait and see.

  • Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:12pm

    Re: Karma's a...

    Nielsens customers are anyone who values an independent third party that can be trusted to be basically honest about who is watching ads and how much. So, their customers have been content distributors (broadcast networks) and advertisers. Both parties want a referee that can say "this ad rate is fair" rather than have the two of them bicker endlessly about it.

    Content creators do benefit from this system because it allows a process by which they will be paid for their efforts. I wouldn't say they've ever been a direct customer of Nielsens at all.

    Nielsens never had a prayer with non-ad-supported services like Netflix, who have perfect views of who is watching what, when and how. Netflix doesn't need Nielsens to provide its independent third party function because there's nobody Netflix answers to, for specifics on who is viewing shows and how much. You might have noticed Netflix doesn't even reveal this info - they have no motive to.

    It's possible that content creators might value Nielsens now, in a world where they are very much at a disadvantage vs Netflix or other ad-free streaming platforms. If somebody creates a successful show, Netflix might lead them to believe it's not at all successful. Just barely hanging in there, really. But we're nice guys, we'll do a season two if you knock down your price 20%.

    And the content creator has no recourse because there's nobody to dispute Netflix's figures. And the number of successful streaming platforms will not be large because subscribers are getting fed up at their being too many and will stop at just 2 or 3 really big ones. And those few really big ones will be the only ones standing at the end of the day.

  • Dec 28th, 2018 @ 2:06pm

    Re: More money for the rest of us!

    Maybe CBS will lower the fees they charge advertisers but Nielsens isn't about people paying networks directly. It's about getting advertisers to subsidize free TV by selling the audience to the advertisers. The audience has always paid in the sense they are the product, not the customer.

    What will actually happen is, the ads will move to Facebook and Google, where all the viewers under 35 have gone anyway. That's the audience the advertisers want to chase by offering free TV or something that's like TV but probably more like cat videos. Oh well, it's free. If you want anything good, pay for it.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 7:06pm


    Failure of some of these businesses, not business models per se. The streaming business model rewards bigness and severely penalizes anything less than very big bigness. That will cause a consolidation and limit the number of successful services.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 7:04pm


    Because these companies are capitalistic competitors who exist in order to drive the other guy out of business. Netflix, Amazon, Apple, Disney, Hulu, etc - all the same. They want to win it all. They have to fight to the death. A few survivors will emerge, bigger than ever since they will eat the losers. It's already happening - Disney is gobbling up Fox. That's just the start.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 7:03pm

    Re: Apt example

    The rational market will result in a sort of cross-licensing as most of these players go under and are bought by the few survivors. Streaming can't support a huge array of competitors when consumers subscribe to a couple and then stop. And always the couple biggest. That's going to create a very high cutoff bar for success.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 7:01pm

    Re: Re: a silver lining?

    Consider Netflix's license for Star Trek Discovery. They get it in most of the world, and it no doubt is contributing to helping them ramp up subscribers overseas. It's a huge win for them.

    But CBS made that show so that they could launch their own Netflix competitor. They are only licensing it Netflix because they have no global streaming footprint (yet). If CBS thought Americans could easily VPN their way into a foreign Netflix subscription and get access to the show, then CBS would be shooting themselves in the foot to license it to Netflix. So they would license it in the usual willy nilly patchwork fashion and Netflix would lose out big time because they wink at VPNs.

    And that is really why Netflix cracked down on VPNs. They realized the harm VPNs were doing to their ability to swing great deals like Star Trek Discovery greatly outweighed the ire of a few subscribers who use them.

    More services won't lead to more region locking since to prosper, they need the scale you can get only by being global (which is CBS's long term plan - if they succeed, Netflix will lose their license to Star Trek as CBS can handle distribution in each country they expand to). You will however get content locking. Star Trek will be behind CBS's paywall across the whole world - IF CBS succeeds in their attempts to become a Netflix competitor. The jury is way out on that one.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 6:54pm

    Re: Yep, it's a problem

    Here's the problem, if you're the Duffer Brothers and want to get someone to distribute your Stranger Things show, the streaming services won't give you the time of day unless you give them an exclusive because exclusives are how Netflix convinces people to subscribe to their service and not another. If Stranger Things were on every service, it would be of value to none of the services. No competitive advantage.

    If the Duffer Brothers won't agree to exclusivity, Netflix says no, and so does every other streaming service. You don't see CBS shows on ABC and vice versa, do you? Same idea.

    Now if someone like David Lynch came along and made some series that he insisted play on every streaming services, I guess he could get away with it because he's a big draw. But most creators just want an audience so they will sign on the dotted line.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 6:49pm


    Hmm? On Netflix alone:

    Orange is the New Black, Glow, Ozark, Mindhunter, Bojack Horseman, Lemony Snicket, Stranger Things, The OA, Fauda, Berlin Babylon, Santa Clarita Diet, Frankenstein Chronicles, and Better Call Saul.

    And they've got The Godfather Parts I and II now, too. That seems like plenty. But I haven't mentioned the plethora of fine nature documentaries they have.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 6:47pm


    Netflix will benefit from this. People will subscribe to one or two big services, maybe three if they're feeling flush. But at that point, it's not so much about money as time. Who has time to watch all this stuff? Two services can fill all your time. If you have to see this or that specific show, then you pirate it since it's not worth subscribing to any service just for one silly show.

    So in the end, the very biggest services will be unhurt, while the ones below a certain high cutoff point will find that everyone is pirating their shows. They will go under and their shows will cease production or, if popular enough, be purchased by one of the surviving services.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 6:42pm


    CBS still thinks they can join the winner's circle in the end, and become a massive global streaming service a la Netflix and Amazon. But with Disney and Apple jumping in, I'm not betting on them going the distance. There's going to be a high cutoff point for success since consumers don't want a dozen services and tend to stop with 2 or 3. And there is a lot of overlap in those 2 or 3, you can probably figure out who.

    Star Trek is CBS's attempt to jump into that winner's circle. If they fail, they will be dismembered and bought up by the winners a la Fox. Netflix would probably love to buy some of their IP.

  • Mar 27th, 2018 @ 6:39pm

    Re: Re: Why is this a problem?

    Here's the most likely outcome: people will opt to subscribe to a couple services - the biggest with the biggest range of content - and if they see something on a smaller service, they think "nah not worth bothering with" and pirate that.

    This will benefit a small number of the largest services (Netflix, Amazon, maybe Disney because they have the brands, maybe Apple because they have the money to buy their way in and wait out everyone else).

    The cutoff bar for success will be high because everyone who falls below a certain tolerance threshold for bothering with their service will see their stuff get pirated. Then those services go under and either the content ceases production or if its popular enough, is bought up as an exclusive by one of the survivors.

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