New multichannel networks (MCN) were out in force in Cannes this week. MIPTV, the main market for television programs is readying to drop the ”TV” and become a trading place for all digital content. New players have entered the arena.
The digital challenge was evident during the market as the traditional television business is getting slower: attendance is drastically down (figures weren’t available at the writing of this), no major deals were announced, there was no hype on new programs and the advertising billboards along Croisette were scarce.
YouTube was leading the pact of multiple channel operators, along with Maker Studios (recently acquaired by Disney for reported 500 million dollars), Chipotle (providing a new twist on food programs), Paris-based Melberries and a host of others.
Youth brand VICE’s founder and CEO Shane Smith was echoing the confidence of the new players. Smith said people ask him if VICE is on TV, digital, convergence? ”All I care about is content. There’s been a changing of the guards in media. Content could be online, mobile, anything. When it’s on holograms, we’ll be on holograms.”
Twitter strong on second screen
Various second screen applications were presented at MIP Cube. Promising products were in the audience metrics field. Laurent Dehasse, co-funder of French Vigiglobe presented a tool for qualitative analysis of social media intelligence. Its idea is content enrichment via research and data minig. Vigiglobe partners with Twitter ecosystem and is one of the four European Twitter partner companies.
Deb Roy, chief media scientist at Twitter presented an example of NFL embedding a 30-second clip of just-aired football footage in a tweet targeted at a Twitter user who is engaging in a hashtagged conversation –whether or not they were watching the TV. ”It is about taking tiny bits of TV and use Twitter to broadcast them and extend the reach,” he said.
Want to learn more about the applications made for accompanying screens? Commission Helsinki will present a full day seminar on Second Screen ABC in Helsinki on May 8th. Please get more information of the seminar here: /events/second-screen-abc/
”Original yes, but make it funny”
– Didier Joos, TEVIZZ
MIP also paraded online talent on stage. US-based online-only news program The Young Turks was participating in Digital Fronts, MIPTV’s new market place for digital-only content. The Young Turks is a fresh take on the established news broadcasts and it aims to tell things how they are. Its video channel on YouTube has over 1,5 million subscribers and has recorded almost 1.4 billion views. Most online content is based on humor, lifestyle and entertainment.
MIP presentations dealt with producing and selling to multiple platforms –and how to monetize them. It became evident that many interesting upstarts are brewing under, but real breakthroughts still remain few.
This year at MIP absent were the Asians, Russians, Americans, and the list goes on. A few countries stood up, namely Israel and Turkey. Israel is breaking through to the international market with its scripted formats, such as Prisoners of war aka Homeland and non-scrited formats. Israel is also doing active business with China.
Turkey is hitting the market, especially Near East and Eastern Europe. Long running dramas and romance are in demand and Turkey is happy to carve out its share of the business.
Film Commissions at MIP were few and apart. Wales succeeded having its own seminar slot on funding and production opportunities, along with Brussels, who presented companies shaping the future of digital content. ”Incentive award” goes to Trinidad Tobago, who claims to reimburse 50 % of the local spend back to foreign productions.
Cross culture drama continues strong. Scandi fare is still riding high on the vawe created by Borgen, The Bridge, Wallander, Lilyhammer and others. Sweden’s TV4 commissioned second season of Welcome to Sweden, a comedy about a New York accountant who follows his Swedish girlfriend when she returns home. The show will premiere on American NBC this July.
4K Ultra HD screenings were held throughout the week, but it seems that the only loyals for the format at this point are Japan’s NHK and the BBC. It is hard to get commitments from big broadcasters for this costly transition. Online services such as Netflix, YouTube, Amazon and others are able to stream 4K content, but it seems 4K remains on eperimental level for years to come.