Thursday, February 28, 2013

Amazon Prime Adds More VOD Content

Content creators, even established networks like HGTV and Food Channel, are constantly seeking new distribution growth to build revenue streams.  Cable has been for a while the predominant way to view video content and the development of video on demand (VOD) offered consumers more ways to access and view.   But consumers are dropping cable and the web has become the destination for today's and tomorrow's viewer.  To reach those consumers, Scripps Interactive has partnered with a new distribution partner, Amazon.

Subscribers to Amazon prime will now have access on demand to multiple series from HGTV and Food.  Not only can they stream and watch, but consumers can purchase and download episodes as well.  While this is clearly good news for both Scripps and Amazon, I must wonder what Scripps' current distributors, Comcast, Time Warner, Cablevision and others think of this deal.  True, shows are being available to paid subscribers to Amazon Prime, but it must still feel like a competitive threat.  And while it is strictly on an on demand basis and not a linear feed of the network, viewership is moving more and more to an on demand world with the only exception being live programming.

Kudos to the Scripps team on what will be seen by many in the cable industry as playing with fire.  In the long run, deals with these alternative platforms, the ones currently disrupting the media industry, should ultimately keep the Scripps brands accessible to every home. And distribution is certainly the name of the game.

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