Are U.S. Cable Channels Heading Over a Cliff? An audience snapshot at the end of the ‘Teens

Are Netflix and the streamers killing the channels’ business? And thus are opportunities shrinking for producers at the end of the ’20-teens’? Sample – 12 Factual Channels: For my presentation to the upcoming New York State Bar Association annual conference, Nielsen aggregated the Primetime audience for 12 channels that focus on Factual programs. They are: …

Australia’s Stadium Documentary Project: An A$1.25 Mn Production Inspires a New Format for the Multi-Platform Video Era

The Nyoongar Stadium Documentary project is an inspiring story of how new digital screens, multi-platform distribution and an imaginative approach to outreach combined to create a well-funded documentary format. The Challenge: Perth’s state-of-the-art football stadium was being built on a traditionally significant meeting ground of the Aboriginal first nation Nyoongar people. How could West Australia’s …


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 …

Off The Fence: Independent Distributor Celebrates 25th Anniversary in Cannes. A Podcast with CEO Ellen Windemuth

Ellen Windemuth launched OFF THE FENCE from her basement 25 years ago. In this week’s podcast, Ellen: Looks back at her company’s launch. Reflects on the particular challenges then for women in a male-dominated industry. Explores how Off The Fence grew into an industry-leading independent distributor / producer with a turnover of around $20 million. Describes her …

Royal Wedding & Better Baking: Best British Factual, 2018. The Top 200

The “Best of British” is one of my more popular posts. I list the year’s highest-rated unscripted programs, usually to honor UK producers in time for their PACT party at Realscreen. For a different look at 2018, I combined the Documentary, Factual, Lifestyle & Current Affairs categories, showing the best single episode for series. It’s …