Too Much TV: Your TV Talking Points For Thursday, September 22nd, 2022
More adventures in streaming UX tweaks
Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Thursday, September 22nd, 2022.
My apologies for the lateness of today’s newsletter, but it’s been a day…
THE TRANSITION FROM BROADCAST TO STREAMING
Joe Adalian takes a look at three shows that recently moved from linear television to streaming in the latest edition of his Buffering newsletter for Vulture, and the piece does a nice job of sifting through the available ratings data. Of the three shows he highlights: Amazon's Thursday Night Football, Disney+'s Dancing With The Stars and Peacock's Days Of Our Lives - Amazon seems to be finding the most success so far:
Let’s start with what the title we will likely end up knowing the most about from a data point of view: Prime Video’s Thursday Night Football. The Amazon-owned platform actually worked out a deal with Nielsen to release an actual ratings figure for its weekly telecasts, and after a nearly weeklong wait, we finally got data this morning. Per the ratings giant, the Chargers-Chiefs showdown attracted a massive average audience of 13 million total viewers and a peak viewership of 14.6 million during the last 15 minutes of the 10 p.m. hour. That’s better than the 8.8 million viewers who watched TNF on the NFL Network the same week last year, and in the ballpark of the franchise’s multiplatform ratings average last season (16.4 million viewers on Fox, Prime Video, and NFL Network).
Joe mentions his unscientific observation that Dancing With The Stars seems to have had quite a social media buzz this week and for what it's worth, I've noticed the same trend. Despite what might be described as a lack of big star power, everything I've written about the show has received a lot of traffic. Including my piece in yesterday's newsletter which offered some suggestions about the show's presentation on Disney+. I've gotten so many comments about the piece that I'm expanding on it tonight and breaking it out into a separate article so it will be easier for people to share. I'll link to it in tomorrow's newsletter.
CHARLIE COLLIER EXITING FOX ENTERTAINMENT FOR ROKU
Variety is reporting that veteran TV executive Charlie Collier is exiting his post as CEO of Fox Entertainment to become president of Roku Media:
Collier will oversee advertising sales and content for Roku’s owned-and-operated channels featured on the streaming platform that hosts the fast-growing number of free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) channels as well as serving as a key funnel for Netflix, HBO Max, Disney+, Paramount+ and other subscription streamers.
Collier’s appointment coincides with other senior-level changes at Roku. Two top executives, Mustafa Ozgen and Gidon Katz, have been upped to presidents as Roku founder and CEO Anthony Wood vows to create a “next-generation media company.”
HULU, BRAVO AND CREATING ORIGINAL CONTENT
I try not to link too much to pieces behind paywalls - even if I subscribe. Because I don't like pointing to posts that many of my readers might not be able to access. And it's not fair to the publication to pull out all the main points of the piece.
But I will ignore that self-imposed edict on occasion and in that spirit, I wanted to highlight the new weekly column from Entertainment Strategy Guy for The Ankler. He takes a look at the state of Hulu's original lineup and offers up his estimate of how the loss of next-day programming from Bravo and other Comcast will impact Hulu in the coming months.
More importantly, Hulu is pretty dependent on these day-after-air series to drive engagement on its streamer. As much as it pushes its originals, the data shows that, compared to other streamers, Hulu’s value to customers comes from acquired titles.
Parrot Analytics “demand” data illustrates this well. (To calculate “demand,” Parrot collects a lot of user ratings like IMDb and Reddit conversation, and behavior data, like search and piracy, and synthesizes it.) It tracks both the demand of the entire streaming catalogue and the demand for originals. And you can see the gap for Hulu:
The entire piece is well worth reading and as always, ESG does a nice job putting context on a bunch of different data points. As an aside, he talks about Hulu picking up a number of A&E titles and if you want to see what's been added, I have the entire list of 120+ seasons here.
And I hesitate to bring this up, because every time I say something even remotely positive about Netflix, I have people accusing me of being in the tank for the streamer. But despite that, I will note that if you look at the chart above, it's clear that no matter what you think of the overall quality of Netflix's originals, they are driving much more interest internally than any other streamer's original slate is on their service. The biggest caveat is Apple TV+, which essentially doesn't have a catalog of licensed content to use as a comparison.
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ADVENTURES IN STREAMING UX TWEAKS
Here are a couple of little recent adjustments I've noticed in the UX of a couple of streamers:
Entertainment-centric vMVPD Philo continues to make little changes in its UX. They've added the current time in the upper right-hand corner on some of the platforms.
The second change is much more interesting. When you go into the episode page of a show you've recorded, you now see two options: the version you've recorded (complete with ads you can't skip through) and a shorter on-demand version that has a couple of pre-roll ads added to it:
Since the page lists the running times of both versions, users likely will pick the shorter one (which is the on-demand version). My hunch is that those pre-roll ads on the on-demand version are sold by Philo and the change is a subtle way to change subscriber behavior and increase available ad inventory for Philo.
I also noticed a slight tweak on Discovery+ and it all comes down to convenience. Any time you can cut a step out of a process, the better it will work for subscribers and the more likely they are to complete the action. The streamer recently changed the way subscribers can add a show to their watch list. Previously, subscribers had to click the show tile and then add the show using a button on the next page. Now a button pops up offering the save option when a subscriber's cursor hovers over the show tile, which makes the action more intuitive and allows them to do it in one less step:
ODDS AND SODS
* The success of House of The Dragon has led to more viewership of HBO Max across the board. Three of its shows are now in the top 10 of all streamed shows: Game Of Thrones,House Of The Dragon and The Big Bang Theory.
* 'Riverdale'actor Ryan Grantham has been sentenced to life in prison for murdering his mother.
* Season two of the Max Original documentary series Wahl Street, which offers fans a glimpse into global star Mark Wahlberg’s life as he juggles the demands of a rigorous film schedule coupled with an ever-growing network of diverse businesses, debuts with ten episodes on HBO Max beginning on Thursday, October 6th.
WHAT'S NEW FOR THURSDAY:
Here's a quick rundown of all the new stuff premiering today on TV and streaming:
Batali: The Fall of a Superstar Chef (Discovery)
Charmed And Cheated (LMN)
Karma's World (Netflix)
Law & Order Season Premiere (NBC)
Law & Order: Organized Crime Season Premiere (NBC)
Law & Order: SVU Season Premiere (NBC)
Norman Lear: 100 Years of Music And Laughter (ABC)
Power Of Women (Lifetime)
Raven's Hollow (Shudder)
Snabba Cash (Netflix)
Thai Cave Rescue (Netflix)
The Dreamlife of Georgie Stone (Netflix)
The Hype Season Premiere (HBO Max)
The Kardashians Season Two Premiere (Hulu)
Click Here to see the list of all of the upcoming premiere dates for the next few months.
SEE YOU FRIDAY!
If you have any feedback, send it along to Rick@AllYourScreens.com and follow me on Twitter @aysrick.