In The Frame - October ’18
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In The Frame - October ’18

Streaming / Online / Tech

The window is closing,” the chief executive of ITV has warned of UK broadcasters’ chance to build a British version of Netflix. Carolyn McCall’s comments follow the announcement of Netflix’s third-quarter-record results last week, as the company added almost seven million subscribers, taking its global total to more than 137 million. Netflix has almost 10 million UK subscribers, Sky has 9.6 million and Amazon’s Prime about 7.3 million.

Amazon Prime might be slowing down, following the publication of “evidence” that fewer people are signing up for the product. The way Amazon accounts for revenue from Prime subscriptions in its earnings changed this year, “which provides a look at how Prime membership has slowed down”, according to analysts.

Netflix is pushing into interactive shows and developing content that will let viewers choose the next storyline in a TV episode or movie. Viewers will get to choose their own storylines in one episode of the upcoming season of Black Mirror. Netflix also is about to release a new animated series based on the popular video game, Minecraft.

BBC News

The BBC and the UK’s other public service broadcasters – whose future we discussed in this recent blog post – have asked the government and Ofcom to help them keep their top spots in the EPGs, as they consider how best to take on the might of Netflix, Amazon, et al. PSBs in the UK have had guaranteed top slots in the EPGs since 2003 but changing viewing habits mean EPGs are often bypassed by viewers altogether.

Ofcom’s first annual report on the BBC has been published, covering April 2017 to March 2018. Its key findings are:

  • Although the media landscape is changing rapidly, the BBC continues to play a central role across TV, radio and online platforms
  • The BBC is generally delivering on its remit for audiences
  • The BBC is not sufficiently transparent, particularly in the area of competition
  • The BBC should maintain its commitment to producing original UK programmes, and be more innovative and take more risks in doing so
  • The BBC should take significant further steps to engage young people and improve how it represents and portrays the whole of UK society

The BBC has recently launched several products designed to appeal to younger audiences:

  • BBC Sounds, a new app that pulls together the corporation’s radio, music and podcasts, including an EastEnders spin-off podcast
  • A CBeebies app
  • iPlayer box sets
  • Bedtime Stories on smart speakers

And finally…

  • ITV has launched ITV Studios Netherlands as it looks to capitalise on the potential for its formats in the country, which is recognised as one of the top three export markets for formats.
  • SIS Live has been acquired by NEP Group, the Pennsylvania-based company that provides outsourced production services for major events throughout the world, including the Olympic Games, the Super Bowl, Academy Awards and the Premier League. SIS Live will rebrand to NEP Connect following the acquisition.
  • The value of the UK’s VFX industry to the economy has been estimated at more than £1 billion, according to the BFI’s ‘Screen Business’ report
  • Major TV and film studios are to open in Birmingham. The 20-acre, six-stage Mercian Studios will be located near Birmingham airport.
  • Video platform Vimeo has agreed a “product integration” with LinkedIn.
  • Bectu has appointed its first female head, Philippa Childs, to succeed Gerry Morrissey, who is stepping down after more than 10 years in charge.
  • Four years in the making, Frame 25’s app Hive 25 is now available. Free for freelancers, it’s been designed to help increase work opportunities and reduce admin.

From the latest news to the latest positions – click here to see Frame 25’s most recent additions to its list of available TV jobs.