Last night there was WebClub again and it felt nice to see everyone and go back to Colocvio. The topic was video and the panel was heavy with important people (Nicoara, Stanca, Biris, Stan, PA de Hillerin, Todi Pruteanu) who had something to say under the smooth moderation of Victor Kapra. The topic was video online and discussions ranged from who hosts it, what people like to watch most, is UGC relevant, how do we make video for online and of course how do we make money from it.
It took me a while to put all the ideas that were being thrown about in some order and also to make a summary of what seemed truly relevant.
What stayed is this:
- none of the local players knows exactly what to do with video online, except for maybe Orlando who understands that there is good content already available for online and all he needs to do is be the only one who streams it and gets paid for that
- premium content to be paid for by the user and advertising are the only two ways to monetize video right now (or ever, for that matter)
- nobody is really struggling to put video on your mobile because technology is not convergent and because simple internet on your mobile is not really raking in the shitload of money people were expecting
- producing content for online is something everyone is looking to do except that, surprise, surprise, it is not that easy to make, it's expensive and so far it does not pay off.
- if it has tits it has a better chance of becoming popular and the question are the tits we are paying for better than the free ones users post (okay, this is my silly take on the much sex banter there)
- everyone agrees that video is the next big thing
At which point I cannot help but wonder what the hell is going on and what are we really talking about. There seem to be 3-4 reasons why you would want to place [original] video online:
- no advertising during the show
- available anytime and anywhere there is a connection
- less legal constraints and more creativity (more tit-showing)
- instant broadcasting - no need to haggle with TV stations to use your content and less advertising money involved to promote it
BUT, in Romania fact is that:
- unless you place advertising there somehow, you will not be able to cover costs because nobody will pay for your content (and there was talk of inserting ads in the stream which by all accounts might be even more annoying that regular TV commercials)
- people, the big chunk of them, have fixed watching periods driven NOT by TV schedules but by everyday life. Prime time is called prime time not because TV stations decide to dump their best content there but because that's when, statistically, more people have time to watch
- so far there has been no online production capable of beating anything HBO produces :D
I think that people are looking online for things they would like to see offline but don't have the chance. Highest views are always for series we don't have on TV and someone has posted online from the US, movie clips, and stupid chimp videos. Fact is online is possibly just a means of getting to the video content that is forbidden to you offline. I wonder if someone had a hit online show what would happen with it. I'll tell you: it would get moved to TV. Effectively, online may be just an opportunity provider versus an alternative provider. So far. What are the other options?
Other points of view?
communication is essential to business making and it involves more than the ability to name your product, write a tag line or a press release. It's an intricate, rational and scalable effort and, let's face it, not anyone can do it.