How Kids Television Became the Most Heated Front in the Streaming Wars

Mostly, I think we’re seeing the beginning of the end for “broadcasting.” Where a fixed set of “shows” are broadcast at particular published times, complete with obligatory commercials. Today, content can just-as-easily be presented “on demand,” to subscribers who therefore do not see commercials and who will no longer tolerate their presence. Content producers can now begin to treat their shows as “episodic movies,” and produce them in that way, without having to plan for “commercial breaks.” Digital cameras and digital TVs allow their products to be viewed in theatrical quality … anytime the subscriber wants to watch them. Plus, money can be paid immediately and directly to the producers based on real-time data about how popular their shows are (and, to whom). No longer do you have to wait for an advertiser to get around to sending you the check, based on somebody else’s (Neilsen’s …) “ratings.” When your show gets watched, you have an immediate record of it, including anonymized data about the subscriber.

Many of the streaming services though now have tiers where you are expected to sit through commercial breaks (while the commercial-free options become pricier). Youtube (the website) has also increased the number of ads in most videos in a bid to convince people to buy a premium subscription.

You can get around this by using an ad blocker, but a person who knowingly blocks ads on a site that won’t give them viruses (because of vetting and the like) deserves to face a paywall on every media, entertainment, news, and personal site he or she ever wants to visit. Now I do have a blocker, but I keep it on only for sites I am not sure of in terms of giving malware.

Eh? What do you call Youtube??

YouTube doesn’t show everything. I think that there is a market for a by-subscription service which will effectively show “movies, and episodic movies” directly to the people who are footing the bill. Those subscribers get to watch anything they want anytime they want, and the content providers not only get paid promptly but can directly see how their products are being accepted. Of course, such services already widely exist, and I expect this trend to continue.