Where the Movie and Internet Businesses Collide
I’m blogging this as much for myself as for whoever’s reading. This is a brain spark I have to remember.
Appearing on Shoot Out with Variety Editor-in-Chief Peter Bart and film producer Peter Gruber, former Warner Bros. CEO Terry Semel of Yahoo! summed up what I have been asking guests on my podcast for quite sometime now, and that is whether or not they think the functionality that RSS provides will ultimately pose a huge challenge to broadcasters.
Here’s a transcript:
“Where does the movie business intersect with the internet business in the future?,” asks Gruber.
“The telephone companies in the US, and in many countries around the world, realize that their phone business is going away. We do computer to computer phone calls at one penny a minute, anywhere in the world, and computer to phone, your existing phone, for two pennies a minute. Why? Because we have no cost. Okay? It just goes over the internet lines. No real costs. So the big telephone companies in the US, Verizon, what was SBC, AT&T and Bell South , they’ve all announced, they’ve all begun the process of laying fiber to your home. They see this as the savior of theirs. Now what does fiber do? In effect, it’s a much bigger pipe. And it all goes over internet lines,” replies Semel.
So the partnerships we have with the three major phone companies in the US, we deliver broadband with them and for them, and we’re their broadband programmers and they deliver the wires. They’ll become the equivalent of a cable company. They each have two or three test cities going right now, that they’ve already wired. So the cable companies are retaliating against the phone companies who crushed their business, and the phone companies are all going into that [the cable] business. And they’ve all dedicated between $7 and $10 billion dollars a piece. They have a lot of cash. And they’re all building these wires.”
Now, what that means is everything we have on Yahoo!, everything we have on the Internet, will go right across those same wires, right onto their big screen television. Okay? So the current services that they provide, mail and all that other nonsense, or some entertainment pieces that we have today, if we had the license to it, or if we were a financier, a partner, we could not only have it on a PC, not only have it on other devices, but we could move it your big screen TV as well,” Semel continues.
“So a movie could be delivered to a home theater environment?,” asks Gruber.
“As you can do video on-demand on cable, and you’re doing video on-demand on an ipod device, why wouldn’t you do video on-demand — same price, same everything — on a place like Yahoo!?,” Semel concludes.
At which point to music cue rises and they go to commercial. But after rewinding and relistening to the clip over and over again, two things besides just the clarity and inevitability of Semel’s pitch stay with me.
First, that Yahoo! may soon announce a broadband deal with AT&T, since Semel said first they had deals with four, and then corrected himself to three, telcos.
And second, that Bart is extremely uncomfortable with Semels prognosis. In my opinion, he appeared to be squirming in his seat as Semel spoke.
I also really love the factiods that pop up on the bottom of the screen during the show. I liked these ones so much that I wrote them down:
In 2005, advertising accounted for 87% of a projected $3.7 billion in Yahoo! revenue
In 2005, combined revenue at Google and Yahoo! rivaled those of the three major TV networks in prime time
He also has this to say about User-Generated and Driven Content.