February 3, 2010

TV shows: the media turtle

There is little doubt that the internet and technology overall have changed the consumption patterns of media. From cds to Spotify, from the Blockbuster across the street to Netflix, from your weekly tv show to Hulu, from the typical movie at a theater to Avatar, from your free-to-air tv to Boxee. From your local theater or home tv to your laptop. But not only have they changed habits, they have changed - or more accurately, they have forced to change - business models.

I am an avid tv shows fan. But I have a problem: I live in Spain and I think that Spanish tv, on average, sucks. Is it because I have lived for a long time in the country that we identify with the showbiz? Maybe...or maybe not. Perhaps it is just about quality.

I mean this because when I think about how things have changed in the media arena in the last years, I feel like the tv show business  is a turtle surrounded by cheetahs. And I pretty much refer to the fact that it is still treated more as a domestic thing than some of its media brothers and sisters.

There is no doubt that viewers all over the globe value good content, regardless its country of origin. A nice movie, relevant news, an addicting tv show... But at the end of the day the industry treats them in a completely different way. Can anyone think of, for example, Avatar being released in Europe 5 months after it is so in the US? Likewise, probably even more obvious, nobody would see the Superbowl or the NBA Finals a week after they are played. But with tv shows it is a completely different story.

As I was saying, I live in Spain and I can't access Hulu, I can't see the last episode of House on Fox.com, I can't buy episodes on iTunes, I have to suffer the previous season on Spanish tv and see the same old boxes on music stores. It sucks.

Why is it like that? Of course I am aware of distribution rights and so forth. But if the windows for movie releases has just shortened (work needs to be done, though, to take a few more steps ahead), please do the same with tv shows. I hate being unable to share my views simply because I am gonna have to wait for months to catch up with my friends. I strongly believe that a huge development is needed.

 I strongly support the real globalization of the business. If the whole world wears Nikes, Reeboks and a couple of other brands, why isn't it possible for us to consume HBOs and Showtimes? Instead, we are force to consume what we don't like and to look for shady ways (piracy) that damage the business and that makes our experience way less enjoyable. I know it will take time but maybe one day...


  1. Me parece camarada, que no sabes muy bien el país en el que vives... el mismo en el que miles de personas veneran a una individua sin educación y sin modales como 'la princesa del pueblo'

  2. Pues si, kolega... y los gran hermanos, generacion ninis, salsa rosas y demas... es lo que hay!