Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Amazon announce 2 new original series. Another threat to traditional TV.

Original online content is growing, to compete with traditional TV, just as expected.

Following Netflix with 'House of cards' and others, Amazon have announced two new original series which they're producing.

Alpha House, a comedy about US Washington Senators (with John Goodman), goes out on November 15th on Amazon instant. It is written by the great Garry Trudeau of Doonesbury fame.

Betas, a series about social media start ups (yep, could be good), starts at the end of November. Silicon valley friends have their moment in setting up a new Social Media play. 

Both have 11 episodes. They've also 3 kids shows in production.

This is the first time Amazon have produced their own original Series and no doubt, follows Netflix. It allows the online broadcasters to compete for viewers with good, quality programming and is great news again, for the online digital video sector.

But it's more bad news for TV.

Already being hit as viewers switch over to online low cost, programming on subscription, as well as, an ongoing obliteration of their audience by Social Media, now they have a content challenge. Their only hope was to retain viewers because of the content traditional TV offers and even this, is being eroded.

Furthermore, Netflix and Amazon are sitting on big cashpiles, and we understand that they're going to compete to buy broadcast rights for live events - notably big sporting occasions. TV will not be able to compete with them here either.

Even as content providers, the recent YouTube deals show that online broadcasters, as YouTube is, are prepared to pay TV stations less for their content. So that revenue stream, small as it might be right now, is definitely reducing.

And as sure as night follows day, Advertising money follows audience. More and more of it is going online.

Yet, TV Stations persevere in the hope that terrestrial broadcasting will "see off" the continuing online challenge as they try to spin "good news" that's just not credible. They continue to live off in some cases, huge state aid, instead of getting into the space, embracing it and being prepared to re-formulate their model. Like newspapers have been prepared to do.

The ticking clock, just got a lot louder.