Online streaming has revolutionised the way we access television. The convergence of traditional television shows and the internet’s streaming capabilities allows shows to be transmitted to anyone with an internet connection to watch what they want, when they want.
There are 3 main types of online content providers-
Services owned by a traditional television network/channel
Every major network in the UK has an online streaming service- iPlayer, ITV Hub and All4, etc. Their shows are often available online within 24 hours and remain for 30 days. Traditional providers are also streaming live programming. BBC, ITV and Channel 4 often release online exclusives. BBC has taken this further, due to budget cuts, as BBC 3 is now only available online.
This includes Netflix and Amazon Prime, which are online, subscription based providers of television and films. They provide shows that are ‘owned’ by other broadcasters and have successfully produced many mainstream shows- such as Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Transparent and soon Clarkson, May and Hammond’s new motoring show.
Peer to peer video hosting service
This provider drastically differs from the last examples as this relies on individuals to upload their own content- including You tube and Vimeo.
Implications for the Media Industry
-No set viewing times has caused; audiences become harder to market to and traditional TV to loose big their audience figures as the audience can “watch it whenever”.
-The expectation free content has been caused by the ‘digital generation’, who have always relied on their parents to pay for their television and regularly watch services such as You Tube for free. Consequently to avoid playing for content people illegally download and stream shows- which means the companies who produce the content lose revenue.
-Distribution laws allow only certain countries to view content. So to get round the issue people use VPN or Proxy servers to access blocked content. However providers are now requiring post codes or television providers before you can access the content to prove your location.