TV You’ll Want To Pay For

I’ve been saying it for 2-3 years; when the heck will tv producers—who sell their shows ready made to networks—start selling their shows online? Obviously there was the whole bandwith issue and a lot of licensing contracts are long term so they didn’t have time to change them but still, I expected something earlier.

In this article on Slate a number of possible schemes to sell tv online are proposed. Going as far as suggesting shows financed solely by online purchasing. A couple million people buying an episode at 2-3$ a pop could finance an hour of drama.

If we assume that the average hour-long drama costs $1.5 million per episode and downloads will cost around $2 per viewer, shows would only need a few million viewers to turn a small profit. Would a few million viewers pay $2 a week to download an hour of television? It’s certainly not impossible. In the past month, viewers have shelled out more than $30 million for two hours of Serenity.

Serenity is the perfect example, Whedon could be one of the first to try this. Or how about JJ Abrams of Alias and Lost fame? Or Chris Carter?

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