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2022 Subscription Services, Finances and Other Stuff


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On 8/25/2022 at 12:31 PM, JLSigman said:

More on the HBO Max debacle

And yeah, "middle America" is the dog whistle you think it is.

After reading that article I'm dropping Max once I catch up on the Harley Quinn show.  They might not miss my money and it might not mean a thing to them.  But I can live without subscribing to this.  That and if I really wanted to catch up on old shows like intended I'd be best off buying them on DVD/Bluray anyway.

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Zaslov can only lose so much money attempting to cater to a subset for so long before the shareholders come for his head.  He's not the only tengently Warner CEO wanting to cater to "upscale middle-america" (see, the whole debacle going on with Six Flags).  But if the service isn't worth it, there are a fuckton of other places for entertainment, I'm not gonna cry about losing a service that isn't showing stuff I want to watch anymore (I imagine HoT will only last until the numbers start dropping and the cast asks for raises, and Harely and Peacemaker are on borrowed time most likely) 

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I've had the app for a year or so, but had never had a paid subscription and on Monday I got an email for the offer. There were two offer codes(oneyear) was the one I went with.

Since I'm on the shelf until Monday I wanted to watch Ted Lasso but have never had an Apple+ subscription, so I'm trying them for a week and the regular monthly price is doable.

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Netflix is moving up the timeline of rolling out their ad supported service - to get ahead of Disney

Per Variety

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Netflix is moving up the timeline for the debut of its cheaper, ad-supported plan to November — in order to get out before the Dec. 8 launch of the Disney+ tier with advertising.

In July, Netflix told investors that it was targeting the launch of the ad-supported plan “around the early part of 2023.” But now, Netflix’s ad-supported is set to go live Nov. 1 in multiple countries, including the U.S., Canada, U.K., France and Germany, according to industry sources who have been briefed on the streamer’s plans. That would be a little over a month before Disney+ Basic, priced at $7.99/month, hits the market in the U.S.

Netflix declined to comment. “We are still in the early days of deciding how to launch a lower-priced, ad-supported tier and no decisions have been made,” a company rep said.

Sources confirmed the new Nov. 1 launch date, which was previously reported by the Wall Street Journal. Netflix and its exclusive ad partner, Microsoft, have requested ad buyers submit initial bids next week, with a “soft $65 CPM” — the cost per thousand views — meaning that the company is open to negotiating the ad rates. That’s well above industry CPMs of sub-$20. Sources speculate Netflix’s request for proposals from ad buyers will function as a Dutch auction, with the company looking to see what the market will bear.

Regarding the starting $65 CPM that Netflix and Microsoft have floated, one ad buyer said, “My guess is they won’t get that.” The feedback from brands is “very much wait-and-see,” the source added. “At anything above $20 [CPM], the feeling is, ‘Let’s let other advertisers wade into that pool first.'”

Netflix is asking for a $10 million minimum commitment in annual ad spending from agencies right now, according to one source. The company wants to lock in ad buys by Sept. 30 to meet the Nov. 1 launch date. Netflix has told ad buyers it expects to have about 500,000 customers on its ad-supported plan by the end of 2022. Netflix hasn’t settled on retail pricing but is reportedly looking at between $7-$9 per month.

Initially, Netflix’s ad-supported service will not have any third-party attribution. It also will have limited targeting ability: Advertisers will be able to buy against Netflix’s top 10 most-viewed TV series and against some content genres. But for the first phase of the ad tier’s rollout, Netflix will not serve ads based on geography (except by country), age, gender, viewing behavior or time of day.

As previously reported, Netflix’s ad-supported tier will have an ad load of about 4 minutes per hour for series. For movies, the streamer will run pre-roll ads, according to sources. Netflix is setting frequency caps (how often an ad spot may be served to individual viewers) of one per hour and three per day per viewer, which are relatively low by industry standards.

https://variety.com/2022/digital/news/netflix-ad-tier-launch-november-1235357465/

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Endeavor Content is undergoing a rebrand in a move to distinguish itself from its former parent company that shares its Endeavor moniker.

On Wednesday, Endeavor Content, the production company behind “Severance,” “Cha Cha Real Smooth” and “The Lost Daughter,” officially changed its named to Fifth Season.

 

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The return of G4TV has not being going well

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At least somewhere between 20-30 staff members were laid off at G4TV today, according to three sources familiar with the business. The video game talk show network from the 2000s was resurrected last fall on streaming platforms like Twitch as well as cable TV, but now faces major upheaval less than a year later. “I truly can not imagine the company continuing to produce our slate of content without the people we lost today,” said one employee.

The timing and severity of the cuts took staff by surprise, with talent showing up on set today ready to film only to have programming cancelled as HR reps met individually with employees. While it’s not clear what the extent of the layoffs will be, one source said those affected were told they would receive anywhere between 16 weeks and six months of severance based on their tenure with Comcast, G4's parent company.

Three sources tell Kotaku that G4's finances have been in bad shape for some time, and managers were tasked with looking for cost savings wherever possible. Things apparently came to a head during an all-hands meeting a couple of months ago when then-G4 president Russell Arons discussed the troubles the business was facing and proposed unrealistic revenue goals for the year ahead. Staff felt blindsided, one source said, due to a lack of clear goals for measuring success against up to that point.

Arons left shortly after and was replaced by Comcast Spectator CEO Joe Marsh who sources say was only interested in finding ways to slash the budget. The suddenness and severity of today’s layoffs were unexpected, however, and call into question what the future of the new G4 will be. The network just recently announced a slate of new content, including a satirical Xplay show called God of Work, a play on Sony’s hit God of War series.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Jurassic World Dominion finally passed the billion dollar mark globally

It becomes just the third movie since the pandemic to pass a billion (Spider-Man: No Way Home and Top Gun: Maverick).

JWD benefitted from being the only one of the three to release in China which added $157 million to its total

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I mean beyond the tax scheme, which is extremely obvious. Like, do they have to make products non-existent for the tax scheme to work? If they don't then they probably figure they're gonna make money off the back end by withholding art and making it rarer and thus more profitable when they re-release it, like Disney keeping movies in their archives. 

Edited by Curt McGirt
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16 minutes ago, Matt D said:

It’s a tax scheme, right?

 

13 minutes ago, Curt McGirt said:

I mean beyond the tax scheme, which is extremely obvious. Like, do they have to make products non-existent for the tax scheme to work? If they don't then they probably figure they're gonna make money off the back end by withholding art and making it rarer and thus more profitable when they re-release it, like Disney keeping movies in their archives. 

Tax scheme and I think so, Curt in answer to your question if Batgirl's anything to go by.

Edited by The Natural
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Content costs can be amortized — or assigned a cost that gets recognized by an entity across multiple years — over the program or film’s expected lifetime. If years on that timeline remain, a company can remove that asset from distribution and use its remaining cost balance to offset taxable income elsewhere.

This is from an indiewire article but it covers it.

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Lionsgate is spinning its studio business apart from its Starz streaming platform

And StarzPlay will be rebranded as Lionsgate+ pretty much everywhere but the US and Canada

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Lionsgate has been exploring its options for Starz, including a possible separation of the pay TV and streaming business and its studio operations. The goal appears to be creating two standalone companies so investors can value the Starz and studio assets separately.

And while some potential suitors appear to see Starz as a streaming platform, others are looking at Lionsgate and its programming library as a possible indie studio acquisition as digital titans like Apple and Amazon muscle into Hollywood.

Lionsgate is touting its 17,000-strong programming library as difficult to replicate and an appealing target for a bigger media player looking to bolt on an indie studio. And despite volatile financial markets, the entertainment industry has seen a recent spate of mergers and acquisitions as major players dive into the streaming space and indie studios get bought up for scale and content.

That leaves Lionsgate — after the spinoff-merger of AT&T’s WarnerMedia division with Discovery and Amazon’s acquisition of MGM Studios — betting it now has a takeover target on its back, even as it has been exploring its options for Starz. The studio would then look to take advantage of increased potential demand for shares of the spun-off studio as film and TV content is prized and spinning the studio rather than Starz would offer a number of strategic and financial benefits. 

Whatever the transaction that may result from current negotiations held by Lionsgate, a likely separation of the pay TV and streaming business and its studio operations will result. Starz is a pay TV channel similar to HBO and Showtime, and also offers a streaming service. Its programming includes the Power franchise, Blindspotting and Hightown. Lionsgate acquired Starz in 2016 for $4.4 billion.

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/business/business-news/lionsgate-to-focus-on-spinoff-of-studio-business-rebrands-starz-outside-of-u-s-1235228985/

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  • 2 weeks later...

Netflix has confirmed that the ad tier version will roll out in November

Netflix Basic With Ads will start on Nov 3 (Noon EST/9 AM PT) and cost $6.99 a month (It starts on Nov 1 for Canada and Mexico)

It will contain support for up to 720p HD (current Basic has no HD support)

Also of note - depending on your country - 5-10% of the items on Netflix will not be available to folks on the ad tier (though they don't provide more detail about that)

The expectation is anyone on the ad tier will see a total of 4 to 5 minutes of ads an hour. New releases movies will only have ads prior to the movie.

https://variety.com/2022/digital/news/netflix-ad-supported-plan-launch-date-pricing-1235402196/

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Not gonna lie, I’m pretty bummed out about G4TV shutting down. It always did feel like they were trying to have it both ways, with being on TV the day after doing a show live on Twitch/YouTube. Pick one and stay there.

At least I discovered a few personalities that I might check out on Twitch. And it got Hasan Piker on TV, so that’s cool.

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I liked a lot of the personalities but this was a long downward spiral they've been on.  There were many attempts to recreate the magic but the channel was much more of its time and could not hold up with stuff on Youtube, Twitch, and other areas.  So yeah I'm sad but not the least bit surprised.  But at least it gave me a taste of some folks that I may consider checking out in some capacity.

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