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Big Trends in the Internet Video Economy: Takeaways from Silicon Valley

2017 June 13
by Peter Hamilton

Mary Meeker is a super-analyst of the Internet Economy. Her presentation at the annual Code Conference has earned cult status. Her predictions are followed by industry participants with such intensity that she reminds me of an ancient oracle. Not that I met one. Meeker’s exhausting analysis, with 355 slides, covers: Media, mobile, games (huge scale and […]

Letters from Baghdad: A Case Study of an Archive-based Documentary With a $1.2 Mn Budget

2017 June 6
by Peter Hamilton

Letters From Baghdad is a beautiful documentary that uncovers the story of British adventurer, diplomat and Arabist, Gertrude Bell. Filmmakers Zeva Oelbaum and Sabine Krayenbühl reveal the struggles of a brilliant, lone woman in an all-male world. Their research uncovered a largely forgotten but mesmerizing film and photographic archive of the early 20th century. Their film blends footage […]

Jeremy Clarkson’s “Grand Tour” Scores Big for Amazon in Parrot Analytics’ New Measure of Cross-platform Demand For Content

2017 June 4
by Peter Hamilton

How do you measure the performance of unscripted and documentary programs online and in social media? It’s a big question because Amazon, Netflix and other online platforms don’t share their data on the performance of their programs. And that’s a problem for the unscripted / documentary eco-system, which has enjoyed at least some access to […]

“The Beatles” at Sunny Side of the Doc, La Rochelle, June 19-22. Speaking Engagements

2017 June 3
by Peter Hamilton

Here are my masterclass and moderation opportunities at Sunny Side of the Doc, La Rochelle, June 19-22. Master Class “The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years” Jonathan Clyde, Executive Producer, Apple Corps, UK; Matthew White, Executive Director, ACSIL, USA. Tuesday, June 20 4:00p. Jonathan and Matt will describe how the production team uncovered rare […]

U.S. Networks: Subscriber Decline Is Modest But Steady

2017 May 30
by Peter Hamilton

The latest Nielsen Universe data reveals accelerating but still modest declines in the subscriber base of most U.S. channels that commission or acquire factual programs. Cord-cutters and cord-nevers are a tiny fraction of the cord-keepers. Multichannel Economy: Channels will continue to spend on programming because they enjoy long-term agreements with cable and satellite operators. For the operators, […]

The LOST Kennedy Home Movies – Unlocking an Archival Treasure for History U.S.

2017 May 29
by Peter Hamilton

Today is John F. Kennedy’s 100th birthday, which we recognize by republishing our “Lost Kennedy Home Movies Case Study” which was originally published on another anniversary, November 22, 2013. ‘The LOST Kennedy Home Movies’ is a History U.S. special that captures our lasting fascination with the Kennedy’s. It is a reminder on a harsh anniversary, that […]

Donald Trump and the Rightwing Documentary Ecosystem

2017 May 23
by Peter Hamilton

Last week, in the darkest days yet of his presidency, Donald Trump made a call for help. It was to a prolific documentary producer. David Bossie led a small rightwing nonprofit in Washington DC. He was inspired by Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 9/11” to turn to documentary production. His effort resulted in a historic Supreme Court […]


2017 May 16
by Peter Hamilton

My “Facebook Originals Are Coming!” post was translated by our friends at Content China. China’s documentary sector has been a regular subject of analysis in this newsletter. The promise of the early years of this century were frustrated by an array of regulatory and commercial factors. However, I can see that the pendulum is shifting. China’s VOD services […]