TV Broadcast Schedule vs Internet Dump

Huntn

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Original poster
May 5, 2008
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I've wondered why online entities like Netflix or Amazon Prime, dump all the episodes of their original programming online for immediate viewing. I think I understand that a network, wants to keep you coming back, so they show weekly episodes. Why is this mechanic not utilized by primarily online entities? Would'nt high visitation rates be better over a period of 3 months, instead of letting people bing watch for just a week?
 

D.T.

macrumors G3
Sep 15, 2011
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Vilano Beach, FL
I was just talking about this the other day, though the context was a little different: I was M&G'ing that some networks have a rolling window of episodes for the current season, so like 6-8 at a time, and as new episodes are released the trailing EPs get removed. My contention was: there are two types of viewers, those who want everything at once, so limited streaming doesn't appeal (i.e., they'll just wait or buy), and the watch-as-it's-aired folks, who probably don't really need streaming, but that's _probably_ the target for "limited season" streaming, folks who keep up week-to-week, but might miss an EP (and don't have a DVR).

It's that first group I think companies like Netflix are targeting. People who put value on watching it now, and that makes them seek out and subscribe to services who offer it that way - and like you addressed, there's not really an advertising model wrapped into the show, so if you watch it in a week or stretch it out to 3 months, it doesn't matter. Only _if_ there are people who hop in and out of their monthly subscription based on the availability of shows - so visitation rates don't apply, it's about monthly fees and long term retention, and they must think that offering it this way creates better consumer appeal.

Good topic.
 
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Zenithal

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Sep 10, 2009
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The majority of major networks go OTA as well. There's no financial incentive to dump it all at once, especially when they have 24 dates of commercial opportunity. Netflix operates on a once monthly fee for access. There are no commercials. If Netflix changed their in-house formatting to traditional form, it would cause complaints and likely many membership cancellations. I pay a fee to access what I want when I want, not wait around to see when it'll show up. Traditional networks also rarely do reruns of their shows. They'll have it online days later or will lock it away until you authenticate your cable sub with them. In which case, you're left with an awful resolution and constant loading issues, even if you run a stable 100 Mbps connection. Netflix? Never an issue.
 
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MacNut

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This is a reason why people don't watch broadcast shows anymore, they know that they can catch up a year later and binge watch a season and not have to wait a week at a time. Now with networks splitting the season, a fall and spring debut they will delay the last 12 episodes forcing people to wait.
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
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This is a reason why people don't watch broadcast shows anymore, they know that they can catch up a year later and binge watch a season and not have to wait a week at a time. Now with networks splitting the season, a fall and spring debut they will delay the last 12 episodes forcing people to wait.
Some have taken that route, while many still watch things as they air (or on a slight DVR delay).
 
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MacNut

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Some have taken that route, while many still watch things as they air (or on a slight DVR delay).
I think it depends on the show. Comedies don't matter, but shows that are serialized people don't want to wait.
 
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freeskier93

macrumors 6502
Jul 13, 2008
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You pay upfront for these services, whether it be monthly (Netflix) or yearly (Amazon). As long as Netflix has enough content to fill inbetween (to keep people paying every month) then it makes no difference to them and doesn't make sense to drag it out, since most people prefer to binge.
 

Huntn

macrumors demi-god
Original poster
May 5, 2008
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The Misty Mountains
I was just talking about this the other day, though the context was a little different: I was M&G'ing that some networks have a rolling window of episodes for the current season, so like 6-8 at a time, and as new episodes are released the trailing EPs get removed. My contention was: there are two types of viewers, those who want everything at once, so limited streaming doesn't appeal (i.e., they'll just wait or buy), and the watch-as-it's-aired folks, who probably don't really need streaming, but that's _probably_ the target for "limited season" streaming, folks who keep up week-to-week, but might miss an EP (and don't have a DVR).

It's that first group I think companies like Netflix are targeting. People who put value on watching it now, and that makes them seek out and subscribe to services who offer it that way - and like you addressed, there's not really an advertising model wrapped into the show, so if you watch it in a week or stretch it out to 3 months, it doesn't matter. Only _if_ there are people who hop in and out of their monthly subscription based on the availability of shows - so visitation rates don't apply, it's about monthly fees and long term retention, and they must think that offering it this way creates better consumer appeal.

Good topic.
Thsnks!

The majority of major networks go OTA as well. There's no financial incentive to dump it all at once, especially when they have 24 dates of commercial opportunity. Netflix operates on a once monthly fee for access. There are no commercials. If Netflix changed their in-house formatting to traditional form, it would cause complaints and likely many membership cancellations. I pay a fee to access what I want when I want, not wait around to see when it'll show up. Traditional networks also rarely do reruns of their shows. They'll have it online days later or will lock it away until you authenticate your cable sub with them. In which case, you're left with an awful resolution and constant loading issues, even if you run a stable 100 Mbps connection. Netflix? Never an issue.
This wins as best answer, advertising vs monthly subscription fee, :) yet HBO does subscriptions and it uses a broadcast schedule, I think, so you'll have more spread out opportunities as new shows appear to get hooked on something else.

This is a reason why people don't watch broadcast shows anymore, they know that they can catch up a year later and binge watch a season and not have to wait a week at a time. Now with networks splitting the season, a fall and spring debut they will delay the last 12 episodes forcing people to wait.
I'm flexible and don't mind waiting, but if the opportunity presents itself, I'll watch three, 1 hr episodes In a session..

Some have taken that route, while many still watch things as they air (or on a slight DVR delay).
I'm so used to DVR, I rarely watch any show when it's broadcast, instead opting for my concvienence.