NETFLIX DOCUMENTARIES USA: The Top 20 Originals in 2019 from Parrot Analytics. Plus: ‘Stranger Things’ vs David Attenborough’s ‘Our Planet’

Netflix famously keeps its audience data a deep secret. We lack even high-level measures of its documentary viewing, much less the detailed demographics from the likes of Nielsen and BARB that drive the broadcast and Cab/Sat sectors. That’s a problem for the Unscripted / Documentary eco-system. Producers, schedulers and their funders are shooting in the …


Chasing Netflix: The Keys to Success & Failure for New Online Video Services

Why do Netflix-type Subscription Video On Demand / Over-The-Top (SVOD/OTT) services succeed? Or fail? My colleague Dr John Morse (Byron Media) shared a very useful presentation / webinar from research firm Parks Associates titled AVOIDING OTT’s TOP FIVE MISTAKES. The key is Subscriber Retention. More than 25% of current SVOD/OTT customers have recently cancelled a …

Quibi: $1 Billion for Short-form Content. Watch the Pitch. Why I Think It’s a Long Shot. Lessons from CBS Cable, Discovery and China’s TikTok

Quibi is showing up in my conversations as an active buyer that is outbidding legacy networks. The ‘Quibi’ brand name does not refer to a Vietnamese appetizer: It is short for ‘quick bites.’ Funded by Disney, Alibaba, Comcast and others, it is a video streaming venture run by corporate heavyweights Meg Whitman (CEO) and Jeffrey …

The Rise of Netflix Increases Pressures on Producers. My Big Takeaways for 2018

Here are my key Takeaways for 2018. It was the year in which Netflix accelerated its challenge to the entire film and television eco-system, with the Amazon behemoth adding to the disruptive force of online video. 1.Channels Under Threat. Factual commissions boomed since the mid-Eighties. A tiny documentary market exploded into the global Unscripted industry …

Happy Holidays!

Dear Friends & Colleagues, It’s been a fascinating year to report on the online video tsunami that is restructuring our industry. As the New Year approaches, we often feel that Netflix and Amazon Prime in particular are changing everything, and at an accelerating rate… I hope that my analysis of the emerging ecosystem for documentary and unscripted programs helps you …

Distributing Documentaries & Non-fiction Programs. A Podcast with Ludo Dufour, Off The Fence’s MD for Sales & Copro’s

Ludo Dufour is the Managing Director, Sales & Co-Productions for OFF THE FENCE, the leading independent non-fiction specialist based in Amsterdam. We connected last June in Durban at NEWF, that super-exciting African conference linking Conservation and Filmmaking. I was taken by Ludo’s presentation on the nuts and bolts of financing and distributing quality documentaries and unscripted programs. …