It feels like Disney is becoming too powerful. I am surprised regulators didn't look harder at the Fox deal.
"anti-trust theory, on both the diagnosis side and the remedy side, seems to be flummoxed when faced by products that are free or as cheap as possible, and that do not rely on familiar kinds of restrictive practices (the tying of Standard Oil) for their market power. The US in particular has tended to focus exclusively on price, where the EU has looked much more at competition, but neither has a good account of what exactly is wrong with Amazon"
I think this is salient...what is Disney doing (so far) to BLOCK competition?
This article describes the requirements for The Last Jedi, but my understanding is that this is pretty close to the requirements for any Marvel/StarWars/Disney film at this point.
I can kind of see demanding that kind of coverage for the first week, but for a second week you're just robbing from competing films and the theaters themselves.
Which is absolutely the point
Fortunately the wheels are starting to turn to improve the situation— Lina Khan’s article in the Yale Law Journal about Amazon’s anticompetitive behavior has been an earthquake in the law world and we may be in the early stages of shaking off the Bork madness.
Thanks for the tip, I hadn't seen it anywhere yet.
2. I remember seeing an article on here recently that talked about how it is difficult to write down Amazon's exact offenses when their pricing algorithm is a secret.
What if Disney was a private collector and bought up all the words art, and sealed it away, or charged admission at a single museum.
People would (and will) make new movies, new art. I have a hard time seeing the justification for an overarching central control (if there even is one) policing who can own what and how much.
When laws (eg, Copyright) allow consolidation like this, the laws are probably going to hurt consumers.
We should seriously consider changing Copyright.
If they provide all the museum security, fine. But in the real world Disney relies on the US legal system to protect their collection.
That's not the question, is it? Take any monopoly from history and examine individual purchases, and they can usually be reduced to a question like yours that seems benign.
Murder isn't the act of firing a gun, it's the act of firing a gun at someone with the intent to kill them.
Do you have a source for this? It seems like supply is increasing at an almost exponential rate, so I'd be surprised if content prices are increasing on a per-unit basis.
Paying out more money for licensing when they don't own the content is like paying rent; it doesn't net you any money in the future, and the market (and your own strength in it) determines your negotiating position, so you may have to pay more to keep showing it later.
Streaming companies like Netflix and Amazon realized this and began producing original content years ago, with costs going toward longer term profits, reduced licensing costs, and increased subscribers of exclusive content. Over 85% of Netflix's new spend in 2018 was on original content, and that year it produced more movies than all major movie studios combined. Not only is licensing content expensive, but an exclusive license is prohibitively expensive; generating the content yourself and keeping it exclusive is a way to attract subscribers and not lose as much cash, and retain have a long-term investment.
This year, Netflix is estimated to spend 15 billion on original content alone. In 2018, Netflix spent 15 billion on content (ballooning up from the 8 billion it estimated before that year began). Compare to 2016 when it spent over 5 billion on content, and 2012 when it spent just 2 billion. Each year they've spent more on content, in part because the licensing is getting more expensive, and in part to produce such a big corpus of original content. But at the same time, its content library has shrank by more than half. They offset this loss of content by leaning on their recommendation algorithm to maximize the content viewed by users.
Compare to HBO, which generally has had marginal increases in content licensing fees. It does this by making nearly all of its TV programming original, and licensing films. Netflix is essentially following HBO's model, but more so.
As even more evidence, Comcast and Disney are moving toward original and exclusive content. Disney is buying Comcast's stake in Hulu, after it recently bought FOX's rights. And NBC plans to put out its own streaming service, where it will probably keep its own content exclusively after 2024.
https://www.fool.com/investing/2016/06/20/netflix-inc-conten... https://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/062515/how-n... https://www.forbes.com/sites/danafeldman/2018/07/09/netflixs... https://variety.com/2019/digital/news/disney-full-control-hu...
- Hulu advertising tier: this can be the dumping ground for all the mainstream network television that Disney and Fox owned, allowing them to monetize that content after broadcast
- Hulu premium: compete with Netflix for premium television, can be more mature, and allows for monetizing viewers willing to pay for ad-free.
- Disney+: obviously a different brand with content requirements, it can allow Disney to grow their brand, and monetize the most “die-hard” fans, on top of other channels.
- ESPN+: live is very important, and allows premium advertising revenues to be generated. Sports does not have much crossover with other channels, and has unique business models.
All of these allow Disney to continue making tons of money from the current cable bundles, while opening new markets and segments for monetization, all while defending against threats like Netflix, etc.
I don’t own Disney stock, but their current situation seems very considered, given the current market and where it is going. I think they have single handedly disrupted Netflix’s plan to be the new “TV”.
Less sure about the separation between Hulu's live sports play and ESPN+. It could just be a timing thing as Disney has only had a controlling stake in Hulu for a month (officially). There will likely be a lot of integration and cross over between the 2 eventually.
I found myself enjoying live Tennis on Amazon Prime, and it serves a very similar purpose to me as watching their vod shows
That's exactly what "a la carte" means. It seems like what people really want is the opposite of "a la carte" service--a one-stop-shop for everything, like cable, except over the Internet.
I think that one of the great ironies of on-demand media is just how much stuff is locked up by rights holders and is unavailable. The Disneys and Netflixes of the world make remarkably small catalogs available. You should see some of the libraries that tv stations have sitting on the shelf.
Maybe it's just that a serious change in format and/or delivery always loses 90% of the previous material. It's funny how few LPs made it to CD.
You're absolutely not alone and the fragmented ecosystem companies are building will accumulate interest. A lot of potential viewers will never be exposed to content due to fragmentation, and without a critical mass of subscribers, "must-see" content will never grow organically.
Choice only drives priced down when it is choice between options which are actually substitutes for each other. What is instead happening is that the uniquely attractive franchises that people are interest in and not willing to substitute for something else are getting distributed over more different offerings, which isn't really competition in the sense that drives down prices much.
You can rotate your National Amusement(Viacom/CBS/Paramount), Disney/Fox/Hulu, Comcast/UniversalNBC, Sony, ATT/DirecTV/WB/Turner/HBO, Netflix accounts. They arent a contract. You have the incumbents (Disney, NA, Sony, Comcast, ATT, Verizon) vs the tech giants (Netflix, Apple, Google, Facebook.) One thing to notice is that Sony, Disney, and NA are now the odd ones out not owning an ISP. You buy one for a month each, cancel, switch to the next one.
It ends up being a LOT cheaper than cable if you rotate, and probably more expensive if you decide you need all channels at all times. The ability to rotate through them is a huge plus over cable/satellite.
Shame that they're going to be totally separate ones. Seems purely branding, especially around "disney app" being more family friendly than a "Hulu app with just disney package."
In reality I think most people's dream is access to everything ever made under one app for < $20 akin to Spotify.
Yes spinning the same content out into more services with smaller catalogs that each cost as much as the old large-catalog service is a verion of a la carte, but its a version that illustrates (rather than contradicts) that the vision of a la carte as cheaper is dead (or perhaps more accurately was always a pipe dream.)
No, individual streaming service prices are mostly constant or edging up over time as catalogs shrink and more content owners set up their own exclusive siloed services.
I personally don't think they are even comparable services but I have not had cable service in ~15 years so things might have changed considerably.
The thing to remember about hulu is a TON of hardware remotes have a physical Hulu button. You wouldnt want to lose that kind of placement without remapping it to a new app.
Knows a lot? Probably not. Knows enough to disapprove of it? I'd say so. Especially when limited to the market of people interested in buying American video content.
I will give you 20th century fox, but I'm not sure that registers as being the same company.
E.g., this event got a fair amount of coverage the Netherlands:
But the general role and influence of Fox News in US politics and society is a frequent topic in journalism outside of the US as well of course.
It might also be branding - Disney wants everything Disney to scream DISNEY, as opposed to Hulu content.
Do we know if Disney has it's own rights for distribution? It must.
Look at Netflix. There’s no way to tell where any particular show fits without looking into it. Netflix needs some kind of sub branding to slit out the different niches of shows. Disney is going to get that out of the gate. And they will let just subxniches of people subscribe to just the part they want.
It also sounds from PR that despite taking control of Hulu, Disney also has interest in Hulu remaining their Live TV offering for non-Disney channels, and that Disney would still like Hulu to be a welcome home for what Time Warner and NBC Universal content it can continue to license, though that will probably start to get weird in coming years. It probably would still be in Disney's interests that Hulu seem a "neutral" or "cable" brand, especially given the actual cable infrastructure that AT&T (Time Warner) and Comcast (NBC Universal) directly control.
If money is speech, Disney has been talking a lot in how much money it has spent on both the Disney+ project and the Hulu buyout. But speech of the money will always be a bit of reading the tea leaves and the color of the wind.
Hulu is also only a US domestic service. Disney surely wants to sell subscriptions to its more mature material worldwide, just like Disney+.
Also, Disney seems to have renewed Hulu's exclusive contracts for Cloak & Dagger and The Runaways, so it sounds like Disney is very prepared to take a "split" approach to Marvel with Hulu being home to an interesting subset of Marvel properties. It does sound like R-rated films like Deadpool will be on Hulu rather than Disney+, at least based on conjecture so far.
(I also wouldn't be surprised if all of the Fox X-Men stuff ended up at Hulu rather than Disney+, rather than confuse young fans of the current MCU. It may be Disney makes the dividing line be the "Marvel Studios" brand, of which the Fox films were not. But of course that remains to be seen.)
Hulu also has day after broadcast content with NBC,ABC, and FOX. Those are much more valuable than library content.
>>> Disney sees Hulu as a key pillar in its direct-to-consumer strategy, serving as a home to more adult-oriented entertainment fare alongside the upcoming Disney Plus (launching in November in the U.S.) and the ESPN Plus sports package. Disney says it’s likely the trio of streaming services will be bundled together at a discount at some point.
It’s hard for someone not at least somewhat industry aware to see evil in the Mickey Mouse Mass Media Cruise Ship Marvel Starwars Conglomerate.
hope they don't kill Hulu's $6 ad supported plans..
If you want to be even more daring and spend a little bit of public money, you could have a publicly financed streaming service with most major public domain works. You could make it available through the Library of Congress.
"the US and other world governments exist to serve Disney and their shareholders"
Call it hyperbole if you want, but it's the reality we're living in.
There was one other that also affected Disney's copyright terms, but I can't find any evidence that Disney did any lobbying for that one, and even if they did it wouldn't have made a difference because that one had near universal support anyway because it was part of a major rewrite of US copyright law that did the most of the heavy lifting to make it feasible for the US to join the Berne Convention.
Also, what about separating the delivery network providers from the content providers? Net neutrality would balance a lot of issues and reinvigorate competition and market forces.
In the context of constant growth encoded in the corporate DNA, corporate leadership has no other choice but make existing services more expensive and lobby to monetize things that were free (copyright extension).
The only reasonable way to fight against this is to write laws protecting society from this continuous encroachment.
- All Linux distributions (OpenBSD, Fedora, or Ubuntu)
Goodfellas, Dances with Wolves, Edward Scissorhands, Total Recall, Ghost, the Hunt for Red October, Back to the Future III, Pretty Woman, and the Godfather Part III were all released in 1990, 29 years ago. These were all created by a group of individuals, and studios spent millions of dollars paying those people to make those movies. The government had nothing to do with creating any of those movies. Why should the government be able to take those movies and release them for free?
The government wouldn't be "releasing" any of these movies; it'd instead be telling the movies' creators: "You chose to make these movies available to the public in a form that makes them vulnerable to being copied. 'To promote the progress of science and useful arts' , we the people are willing to intervene on your behalf — but only for a limited time — to stop others from doing such copying. As to those particular movies, your time is now up; if you want us to intervene again on your behalf, it'll have to be for something new you've created, not for the same old stuff."
[EDIT:] That said, of course, the specific duration that copyrights should have is certainly a valid subject of discussion and debate.
 U.S. Const. art. 1 sec. 8 cl. 8. https://fairuse.stanford.edu/law/us-constitution/
Only because the government is already involved, protecting their interests, is there even anything to "take" in the first place.
On a more direct way, I remember watching VHS movies as a kid in the 80s and there was an FBI piracy warning near the start of all tapes, so the studios do leverage the government to protect their business (and I don't have a problem with that in principle, if perhaps I disagree a bit with the extent of the protections).
In other words, if you want to preserve or strengthen copyright, you're arguing for the government to butt in, not against it.
No, they don't. The fact that Vancouver is Hollywood North is industry inside baseball. The public doesn't know or care that the work is all outsourced (which is in fact how Hollywood wants it). The subsidies exist to bring jobs to the region--especially to keep artists employed, which is seen as socially desirable.
> Nobody would equate those tax breaks with the government somehow helping Amazon run its service.
But they do. That's why the entire controversy in NYC existed regarding the tax breaks for "Amazon HQ2", for instance. People were not happy with the government effectively subsidizing such a rich company.
I don't necessarily endorse the grandparent post's proposal--it seems extreme--though I do believe copyright terms are presently too long. However, I do think that the fact that the public subsidizes the entertainment industry is a valid argument in favor of concessions of some kind, for the simple reason that the public deserves its money's worth.
The overwhelming majority of the time, people just have differing views. Taking the conversation into "are you a paid account" territory without evidence—an opposing view is not evidence—has poisonous, community-destroying effects and is not allowed here,
I don't think it's a coincidence that this purchase comes at the same time when the first works released in 1923 are finally entering public domain