This Fall And Winter Will Define The Future Of TV -- And Maybe Your Job

  • by , Featured Contributor, September 1, 2022

If there was ever a telltale moment for the TV industry, it is now.

More people in the U.S. watch more programming on more televisions for more time than ever before. More money is spent on subscriptions to watch programming on TV than ever before. More money is spent on TV advertising than ever before.

But the ways TV is watched, how ads are bought, and how viewers spend their TV subscription dollars are all changing dramatically. The path that these behaviors take going forward is neither certain nor preordained, and much of that process will not be up to the consumer.

Externalities will play a big factor. The global pandemic and its enormous impacts on entertainment consumption and behaviors have already made that clear. So too will inflation, the war in Europe, and global and national responses to climate change.

However, the biggest determinant will be the actions of critical suppliers in the TV entertainment ecosystem. What device manufacturers (TVs, dongles, streaming set-top boxes), programmers, distributors or advertisers do or don’t do will determine what content will be available where and to whom, and how much folks will have to pay (or not) for it.



Recent rumors out of NBCU are that the company is going to pull its top shows out of their prime-time slots and air them exclusively on Peacock.

On the other side of this issue, we’ve heard Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav tell investors and the entire market that the company is bullish on the future of linear television and will no longer launch movies first (or only) on streaming.

Samsung is launching FAST channels in large volume, directly distributing programming to its TV owners, at the same time it raises what programming bundlers like Hulu have to pay (in cash and ad inventory) for access to those same viewers.

Local broadcast companies like Sinclair, Scripps and Nexstar are doubling down on over-the-air delivery and upping the content, distribution and promotion that they put behind their digital sub-networks, which are free to consumers and deliver more TV ad volume in aggregate than all ad-supported TV combined.

The actions above are but a tiny fraction of what has happened publicly in this space in the past 30 days. The future of TV is playing out now. For those of you whose jobs revolve around the world of TV and entertainment video, enjoy your time off over Labor Day weekend -- because when you get back, you’re not going to have much time to breathe. Your future is going to be significantly shaped (or reshaped) before winter is over.

2 comments about "This Fall And Winter Will Define The Future Of TV -- And Maybe Your Job".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, September 1, 2022 at 4:16 p.m.

    Dave I don't think that we are about to see an immediate and major shift in the way we get our TV shows---and commercials---just more of a steady evolution with business  plan- driven changes that may play out for years.

    For example, I doubt that NBC will shift their main primetime entertainment shows to streaming exclusively. As I commented on an other MP  article, far more likely---if the plan is implemented---will be NBC taking the expensive dramatic  series it uses in the 10-11pm time slot, trim them down to only 10-13 new episodes per season, then present them as "originals" on Peacock in order to stimulate subscriptions; later, these same shows will, no doubt,  return to NBC's broadcast TV network at 8PM or 9PM as low cost reruns---though, for most of the network's over 50 viewers they will, in fact, be "originals" as they were not seen on Peacock. Result; a better deal for Peacock subs and a better deal, in terms of profits, for NBC on both platforms.

  2. Phil Guarascio from PG Ventures LLC, September 7, 2022 at 2:49 p.m.

    Within the framework of your comments comes an opportunity for a new cadre of buyers and strategists to create execution models that will advantage clients. A new breed of men and women who grew up in the new  content distribution world and are intellectually armed to optimize and experiment. Makes me wish I could be starting my. Edina career anew. 


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