Is T.V. Doomed? Well, it Depends.
Solid post by Zach.
Looks like he’s learning a thing or two here at Shelby. ;)
It depends on how you define “Television.” Many people think of traditional television as a monthly subscription, hundreds of channels, and annoying fees. I define T.V. less by the networks and more by the experience. The experience I’m referring to is the traditional one in which a family gathers around a large screen in a living room, or a tired spouse plops in front of the T.V. after work to decompress. These behaviors aren’t going anywhere. I can’t say the same for the network model though.
There was a lot of discussion at last week’s T.V. 3.0 summit regarding Henry Blodget’s article entitled “Don’t Mean To Be Alarmist, But The T.V. Business Might Be Starting To Collapse.” The attendees, many of whom are heavily invested in traditional television, argued fiercely against Blodget, citing all kinds of statistics about how T.V. networks are doing better than ever. Blodget argues that the traditional network model is breaking down: “The only question that’s relevant is whether it’s available on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, or iTunes.” To top it off, Dan Frommer argued that the major networks aren’t going anywhere and have just signed long-term contracts with providers that ensure they’ll be here for a while. There’s no clear right answer here, but I do think we will see a shift away from the network model, although this make take a long time as Frommer argues.
Here’s a simple tentative list of what I think people will stop doing, keep doing, and start doing:
People Will Stop:
- Paying high monthly fees for content they don’t need or watch
- Mindlessly flipping through channels trying to find something compelling
People Won’t Stop:
- Gathering in front of big screens in the house
- Using the screen as a way to decompress
- Saving content to watch later(like TiVo or DVR)
- Watching live sports
People Will Start:
- Queuing up content from their computer to watch on T.V. later
- Sharing content they’re watching with friends
- Choosing exactly what program/show they want to watch without regard for network scheduling