François Godard was quoted in a Digiday article on France Televisions’ decision to stop selling shows to Netflix. Delphine Ernotte, president of France Televisions, explained the decision: “If we want to keep strong French fiction and European fiction, it is necessary that the actors who concur — the creators, the producers, the distributors — that we are in control of the distribution.” Francois, however, said that his remarks are an indication of where the broadcaster wants to be, rather than what it currently can control. “It’s a French Hulu 10 years after Hulu. It will need a lot of investment. It’s not their business to sell to consumers, it’s their business to sell to advertisers.” Pooling ad sales on a joint platform would make more sense than competing with Netflix, he said.
James Barford appeared on BBC News to discuss the issue of mobile contract sleepers. Sleepers are out-of-contract customers needlessly still paying a handset-inclusive tariff when they could take up a SIM-only plan. This issue is covered in more detail in: UK mobile market Q2 2018: Disappointment before dawn [2018-084]
Douglas McCabe was quoted by BBC News in an article on the surge of billionaires buying newspapers and magazines. "The wealthy have always been attracted to news media, chiefly because influential media buys access and influence for owners," he said, before explaining that the "enormous pressure" placed on media outlets by their dwindling advertising revenue, makes them quick to embrace tycoons.
James Barford appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss roaming after Brexit. He concluded that customers of larger operators travelling to big European countries are unlikely to be affected. There may be issues with smaller European countries if operators there play hardball and offer high wholesale rates to UK operators. In 2017 most of the UK operators made a big deal out of the introduction of free roaming, so customers might feel let down if this is reversed without good reason and the operators will not want to irritate them in this way.
Linear TV is ageing, and the largest channels are ageing fastest. There is an ongoing double-whammy effect of a growing older population, and the loss of younger viewers to social media and SVOD services.
The PSBs are suffering more than most, especially the BBC channels. 31% of the population is aged 55+, but over 60% of viewing to BBC1 and BBC2 is by those aged 55+.
The trend can be halted, and even reversed to some degree. There is no inevitability to this ageing process, but it will take concerted efforts to fight it.
UK mobile market service revenue grew by 1.7% in Q2, up from 1.3% in the previous quarter, a disappointing result in the context of boosts from both IFRS 15 accounting and the annual price rises in the quarter
O2 was the star performer this quarter, with its service revenue growth leaping ahead to claim the top spot. BT/EE’s service revenue growth declined on an underlying basis, with weak contract net adds over the last six months catching up with it, and H3G and Vodafone were slightly improved and steady respectively excluding some one-off effects
Thomas Thomson was quoted in The Mac Observer in an article on Amazon’s coverage of the US Open tennis. Viewers complained of poor audio and video quality, but Thomas says that “These issues are a recurring theme, not just for Amazon, for other new entrants in sports video. Amazon has had a brief history of playback and picture quality issues with last years livestream of NFL Thursday Night Football; YouTube TV suffered regional outages in its World Cup coverage in the summer; and, Perform Group’s [experienced] high-profile problems in Italy with the Serie A [Italy’s top soccer league] over the last fortnight.” Starting next year, Amazon will be broadcasting 20 coveted Premier League football (soccer in the U.S.) matches on Prime. While there is time to correct the problems seen at the US Open, Thomas said there are “most certainly” concerns. “This will be a key litmus test for sports OTT as a sector,” he said. “Whilst their outlay on this Premier League package was low, the reputational risk is significant. The User Interface will need to be revamped, and if they can’t deliver at least an SD quality picture to 100% of viewers, then they will not be able to realistically compete with Sky and BT with traditional satellite and cable transmissions.”
Recorded music revenues in Japan are stuck in decline as physical sales sag, although 2017 marks the first year when streaming gained a foothold with 8 million subscribers.
J-pop fans spend on 'experiences' with their idols including events, merchandise, CDs and DVDs, which streaming cannot replicate. Top native LINE MUSIC offers integration with a popular messaging app and bundling with mobile.
In an article on Immediate Media’s acquisition of BBC Good Food, Digiday quoted Douglas McCabe. According to Douglas, it was a foreseeable transition. “It’s a great brand — in print, online and as a live event — and understandable that BBC Studios would want to hang on to it, but in the end Immediate Media provides a more natural home.”
Claire Enders was quoted in a Euronews. article on the announcement of Mark Read as the new WPP CEO. "The conditions under which Martin left were such that there is a premium in appointing someone who knows the ropes and can smooth things down," analyst Claire told Reuters, ahead of the announcement.