In A Drag Race With Netflix, HBO Steps On The Gas

HBO’s deal to air a daily TV newscast from news/documentary outfit Vice provides the pay network with a big way to differentiate itself from Netflix -- and perhaps other networks as well.

An important revenue generation for Time Warner, HBO here expands its media footprint, which already includes a multimedia network, digital channels, a television and feature film production studio, a magazine, a record label and a book-publishing division.

HBO had already been toying with this genre with weekly news programming “Real Time with Bill Maher" and more recently with the comedy-based “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.”

Vice looks to offer an alternative format for one’s daily new story consumption. According to a press statement from Shane Smith, Vice Media founder, the deal “allows Vice the freedom to go after any story, anywhere we find it – and to do so with complete independence."



If Vice does that, focusing on perhaps a select few stories or a single daily story, it could shift news coverage, perhaps with a nod to what the “PBS NewsHour” had been in its earlier versions: “The MacNeil/Lehrer Report” and “The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.”

TV news programming can be an expensive proposition, but also a mothership for a network. Local TV stations in the U.S. still depend heavily on their local news as a center attraction for their viewers.

So in that regard, in an increasingly a la carte TV world, HBO looks  to single itself out from would-be competitors, as future TV consumers  make crucial decisions on what their few key TV networks will be in the future.

1 comment about "In A Drag Race With Netflix, HBO Steps On The Gas".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, March 30, 2015 at 3:29 p.m.

    It's not streaming TV. It's overpriced streaming TV. HBO [streaming] will be $15 per month, but Netflix is only $8 (or $9 starting in May, but grandfathered at $8 for two years to older subscribers). Even at the new price, HBO charges $72 extra per year. No wonder it can offer "news" programming.

Next story loading loading..