“Here is Ben Silverman’s recent keynote speech at the MIPTV market in Cannes. I’ve watched this video 3 times now and still have no idea what he’s talking about: “Hyper-globalisation is a comment on every moment but clearly adapted in localisation”? “Full circle is where culture really can manifest”? “How do you scale bespoke”?”-Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily
It’s like he used a buzzword jargon generator to craft his speech.
This is one of the most important issues of our time. And while I realize the irony of posting something where one massive multinational corporation tells you to beware of “the big” other guys, in this case they’re absolutely and unequivocally right. The internet has so much untapped…
“We want to break down the barriers of the past seventy years of mass media and empower people to create without the need to “pay their dues” for ten or fifteen years before they’re given the opportunity to run with a pilot. We want more people than ever to make a living doing what they love. We want to see the massive change of the music industry — where more musicians are making a living than ever before in history — happen in television.”—Mike Hudack, blip.tv - “An Open Letter To Tubefilter" April 27, 2010
I’d like to congratulate you on all that you’ve accomplished. You have, in a very short period of time, built something meaningful. You are pillars of the community. The Tubefilter brand stands for something, the Tubefilter site is a constant presence in the community, and you have…
An estimated 17 percent of the total weekly viewing audience watch at least one or two episodes of a full-length TV show online. Last year, that percentage was 12 percent, and next year it is forecast to grow to 21 percent.
In light of what has transpired in our industry over the past 48 hours (and after reading a number of great posts like this one by Rafi and this one by Barrett) I figured I might as well enter the fray.
Its been exactly one year since I joined blip.tv to head up our sales efforts. In that time we have added five sales people, expanded our sales team internationally, established exceptional ad operations and creative services teams and have lead the charge in bringing innovative advertising solutions to our advertisers. The state of our union is strong.
My team and I are on the street meeting with advertisers every day in New York, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angels, San Francisco, London, Detroit, Cincinnati, Austin, Las Vegas, Miami, Minneapolis…we’re everywhere. And why is that? Because the advertisers are engaged. They want to hear what we have to say about original web video. We have more advertiser meetings in the next 90 days than we did in the past 180. The state of our union is strong.
But of course it is not easy. We are a new industry. We are up against years of “sameness” in the media buying community, especially when it comes to video content (of any kind). The economic incentive for media buyers to stick with content they know is HUGE. The television advertising market is worth over $60 billion a year. That’s a lot of incentive to keep things just the way they are. But we are chipping away. Believe it or not, the folks at Hulu and YouTube are key drivers in this process for us. They have paved the way into the hearts and minds of the media buying community. Now it is on US to drive the revenue home. It is up to US to convince media buyers of what we all know: authentic, original web shows connect with consumers in ways that no other content can. And this connection is a gold mine for advertisers. We see it every day here at blip.tv in the engagement rates our advertisers enjoy. The state of our union is strong.
This process takes time. We are making progress every day - every single day - but for some I know it does not seem fast enough. But we are well on our way. The dollars are flowing into our category. Be patient. Be strong. Be confident. Every day more advertising dollars are moving into our sector.
If we want to continue to be taken seriously as an industry certain things need to continue to happen. I say continue because the vast majority of show creators I talk to every day seem to truly “get it”:
Show creators need to continue to produce content they are passionate about
Show creators need to continue to engage their audiences via social media
Show creators need to continue to maintain a consistent release schedule
And we must continue to work together to build this industry. The debacle that was the Streamy’s must not be allowed to happen again. In one ill-conceived evening the Streamy’s may have turned two or three marketers completely off of original web video. This is appalling. We owe it to all of the great show creators out there (and to all of the potential new show creators out there) to never let something like this happen again.
I am heartened by the amazing original content I see every day. To all of the show creators out there, I say thank you. You are doing an amazing job. Your content, your passion, your creativity is the backbone of our industry. Keep doing what you are doing; stay focused on producing terrific shows. My team and I will continue to work as hard as we possibly can to drive more and more revenue into this sector. Over time, we will all have a hand in building the next generation of media, entertainment and distribution.
The state of our union is strong.
If you’d like to talk to me about any of the above drop me an email: evanATblipDOTtv.
"Telling a thousand people that their jobs, content, livelihoods, and dreams are a joke, and that the only way they’ll amount to anything is to beg their “betters” (read: “celebrities,” but the unstated implication was made very clear) to slum it in their crappy webseries…well, that’s not gonna go over well. Repeatedly joking that it’s subpar quality, or that there’s no money, future, or reason to get involved only hurts us all."
Folks, what we are doing is hard. While the web has certainly democratized the we make television, it doesn’t necessarily make success come easy. There are no short cuts here. If you think that the only way you are going to be successful in this field is by making a show that gets picked up by a studio/network, then focus on that. But if you believe that you can make great content and work with partners and peers in the industry to help you create, distribute and finance your show so that you can retain ownership of it, then you have to stop believing that you are on the JV Squad.
We are a start-up industry. The landscape of the entertainment industry is changing growing rapidly. We are growing the ecosystem by fragmenting television in a bigger way than cable fragmented broadcast. And we are growing quickly, but it is still going to take time.
If you think what you are doing is crappy and subpar then stop fucking doing it. But if you believe that you can bootstrap your projects, build audiences, and continuously make quality television… then you are building a foundation for yourselves BRICK BY BRICK. It’s that foundation that will make your following projects build on the success of the bricks below it.
Nice article, and good for “Team Coco.” I do however disagree that “ …the Web’s low-cost and relatively low-revenue model would not support the kind of nightly talk show they used to produce.” This is not the pioneering spirit, nor do I believe it to be the truth. I’ve always believed in an “if you build it they will come” reality of internet revenue generation, and I think Conan was in a unique position to prove this theory viable. Were he to launch an internet show, I believe Conan would garner the audience necessary to force advertisers’ hands. Shame we won’t - at least for now - find out.
The most talented people out there are unable to cope with what’s possible on the web right now. They think the web is destroying the proper way of doing things, when all it really did was throw the unsustainability of the status quo into stark relief. And so even the most powerful among these talented and experienced people are still waiting for someone to give them permission to do what they want to do. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of people who have never done this before are passing them by, simply by not being afraid to jump in and learn while doing. And as more people do it, the window for people like Conan begins to close. Because advertisers are just as happy spread millions of dollars across thousands of smaller shows as they are to run them all on one big one.
There’s a major shakeup to report at Digg today: Jay Adelson is stepping down as CEO, effective immediately. Adelson will be replaced by Kevin Rose, who founded the site back in 2004 and has to much extent remained the face of the company through his role as co-host of online video show Diggnation….