Tuesday 20th February 2018,

Web Video Weekly: Comcast-NBCU Fallout, Google’s New CEO, Roku’s Moves, Hulu Goes Into Production

Important news and views in web video, TV, convergence and digital culture during the last week (1/13-20) plus a couple links form earlier in the year!

Research and Policy:

FCC Approves Comcast-NBCU Merger (New York Times; MediaPost):

While the merger was expected, the real squabbles have focused on whether the conditions placed on Comcast by the FCC have any teeth. Comcast will not divest its stake in Hulu but will not be involved in management, the FCC’s way of trying to save Hulu from Comcast’s TV Everywhere ambitions. But the conditions, many say, left out a whole lot.  The conditions have won over some, for obvious reasons, and while some say they have some teeth, more say they may not change the course. Free Press and other public interest groups are panning the merger.

These debates are mostly about safeguarding the web’s premiere growth market: online video; the key conditions place presumed limits on Comcast’s activity. There are other safeguards for Comcast’s cable activity.

FCC Studies Retrans (New York Times): And cable providers try to prove they don’t need regulation.

FCC Net Neutrality Fallout (NewTeeVee): Plus: do Americans really not support it? Does paid prioritization violate the rules?

Mobile Video Is Big But Unwatched (paidContent): Consumes 40% of all traffic but vast majority (90%) is only watch by 10% of users. I assume it’s all iPhones.

Web Video Market:

Google/Weinstein in Deal (paidContent): YouTube’s also screening Sundance short films.

Netflix Still King, But Hulu Plus A Player (NewTeeVee): .

Roku Makes Moves (paidContent 1, 2): Lands a cable channel and readies more ads.

Netflix Can Get HBO — For A Price (CNET): It would have to charge crazy high subscription fees.

SnagFilms Gets a Boost (New York Times)

Web Series:

Squatters Talks Exclusive vs. Non-Exclusive Distribution (NewTeeVee)

Hulu Goes Into Web Series Production (NewTeeVee; MediaPost)

New York Times Watchlist Spotlights High Profile Projects (New York Times): Single Dads and The Handler.

YouTubers Going Mainstream (NewTeeVee; Mashable): iJustine on Spike TV and another YouTube conference.

Hollywood and Tech:

Eric Schmidt Steps Down as Google CEO (paidContent): Larry Page stepping in; Gizmodo offers some analysis.

Hollywood Tackles Premium Video-On-Demand (NewTeeVee)

Web Analytics Firms Tackle Web TV Audiences (Variety): Includes some interesting information about Nielsen’s plans to integrate TV and web ratings.

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About The Author

Aymar Jean Christian is assistant professor of communication at Northwestern University. He writes about media and society for a number of publications. For more information, click the "About" tab at the top of the page.

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