The Filter: Streaming Is The New Black

In this week’s Filter, streaming video is key. From a Viacom study that says tablets are big to the ultimate streaming company, Netflix, announcing it will bet on original programming, online video is making waves.

Tablets Becoming Alternative to TV
Viacom conducted and released a study, “Tapping Into Tablenomics, which surveyed 2,500 people and found that tablets are taking time away from television (and other devices) viewing. People like watching TV on their tablets compared to desktops or laptops. But distribution rights between networks and cable providers are still messy.

However, the tablet isn’t replacing TV, media giant Viacom insists. As a matter of fact, the top genres viewed on tablets, comedy and music, align more with computer than with traditional TV, where reality and drama remain the most popular categories. More generally, the company also points out that second screens can be complementary to the traditional TV experience – and hopefully drive more viewing time overall. If Viacom is to be believed, it is already the case, as over one third of both AirPlay and Whispersync users say they watch more TV on their tablets because of second-screen apps. While it would be surprising to hear Viacom say that TV is dying, it is also encouraging to see that the company isn’t viewing second screens as a threat.

Click here to read the article at The Next Web.

The future of Netflix isn’t just streaming — it’s original programming
Netflix is making the move from content distribution to content creation, which makes sense when you think about video consumption these days. Besides the television, people are watching video on their desktop, on their phone, on their tablet — and many of us are watching content from Netflix. Why not create content itself? And more importantly, will this begin a new on-demand model for original content?

The freedom to make interesting shows — without a network controlling the process or the output — seemed to be an underlying theme, though I don’t think anyone actually came out and said it. In that respect, Netflix could use its newcomer status as a way to recruit more talented content creators who are frustrated by the usual network system. That’s something HBO has long been applauded for — giving artists the creative freedom to build shows that wouldn’t necessarily play anywhere else.

Click here to read the article at GigaOm.

NBC’s London Olympics strategy: If it moves, stream it
The 2008 Olympics are but a memory for NBC. Four years ago, there was the promise of live-streaming events from China. At this year’s London Olympics, that promise seems to be fulfilled. This week, NBC said that it will stream every event as it happens. This is good news for consumers who found themselves trying not to get spoilers in 2008. If this is as successful as the network hopes, this could be an early move to streaming live sports coverage and, more importantly, working around cable providers. Of course, it doesn’t hurt when your network is owned by a cable provider.

This is a ramp-up in commitment from the conglomerate’s strategy for 2008′s Beijing Olympics, during which NBCUniversal streamed 25 sports live but held back popular events like swimming, track & field and diving that were shown in prime time. Two years ago for the Vancouver Olympics, NBC only streamed hockey and curling live. This time around, the NBC Sports Group — newly formed under corporate partent Comcast — will stream prime-time events, too. However, viewers wishing to see archived footage of these events will have to wait until their prime-time presentations on U.S. television are complete.

Click here to read the article at paidContent.

Huffington Post Awarded Pulitzer Prize
Along with winning a Digiday award this week, the Huffington Post also won a Pulitzer. David Wood won the Pulitzer in National Reporting for his work on the “lives of severely wounded veterans and their families in Beyond the Battlefield.” Some say this is a watershed moment for online journalism. But the fact of the matter is, good reporting is good reporting, no matter the outlet. We all know the newspaper industry has been decimated over the last few years, and when talented reporters made the jump to an online-only outlet, like the Huffington Post, it’s not really shocking that a Pulitzer would be far behind.

In recent years, the Pulitzer board has bestowed honors on newer outlets, such as ProPublica, a nonprofit newsroom that often teams up with established news organizations, and PolitiFact, a project of the Tampa Bay Times. Politico, a five-year-old newspaper and web site, took home its first Pulitzer prize Monday for Matt Wuerker’s editorial cartoons. Still, a win in national reporting by an online-only news site is a departure from the typical list of legacy news outlets who clean up at the Pulitzers year after year.

Click here to read the article at The Huffington Post.

Tumblr will sell ads 
Tumblr is at an inflection point. It’s built scale and now finds itself looking to make money. Speaking at a conference this week, CEO David Karp announced the company will be running ads throughout the dashboard, the place where Tumblr users reside — a sort of cross pollination of blogging platform and social network. The underlying issue, however, is that brands have yet to embrace Tumblr the way they have with other social platforms. The Tumblr experience is much different than Facebook or Twitter and the company needs to figure out a way to implement ads without disturbing the user experience on the dash. Brands using Tumblr seem to use the platform as a home for curated content, not traditional ads. (Colleague Brian Morrissey has a take on what this means — click here to read).

Tumblr spokesperson Katharine Barna added that the real estate being offered to advertisers was “not an ‘ad unit’ per se, but a package of native promotion for the Tumblr post ― the most essential and versatile piece of our network.”Brands have already taken advantage of using Tumblr as a platform. Lionsgate created a fashion blog called “Capitol Couture” to promote Hunger Games in January. Glasses shop Warby Parker created a mock Tumblr for April Fool’s Day to sell glasses to dogs.

Click here to read the article at Business Insider.

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