Study done by Ted Nannicelli (2012)
This journal article is very different to all the other research journals that I've annotated. Nannicelli pays close attention to the ontological aesthetic of television as a whole, asking philosophical questions that seize to determine the 'spatiotemporal boundaries' of television work, drawing on television identity and the persistence condition of its artform. Questions like 'when is a television work finished, and when is a television work a distinct whole rather than a constitutive part of some other work' seeks to determines the 'spatiotemporal boundaries' of television shows, serialist or minseries. This article consideres television aesthetic differently to the way Glen Creeber looks at it in my other annotated bibliography, where Creeber examines the 'broadcast' quality of television, the liveness and sense of intimacy; Nannicelli on the other hand regards television as 'text', drawing on Roland Barth's theory on 'work and text'. This article was published in a film study journal, Screen: Oxford Journals, that's intended for readers that are interested in cinema studies. Hence, they look at television through a filmic lens, putting its distribution methods aside and focus primary on 'authorship' and the content itself. This article might not be relevant to our study of media distribution, but it looks into television in a broader sense. Television in this article has been studied as an 'artwork' and hence, offering us a fresh new insight into the fundamental and conceptual framework of television form.
Nannicelli. T. (2012). Ontology, intentionality and television aesthetics. Screen. 53 (2), p164-179.
Study done by David Morley (2012)
Although, Morley's academic style of writing is very dense, his study on the contemporary debates surround emerging television culture are solid and well constructed, provided with cross referencing and textual evidences that can withstand the test of time, some of which is conducted through his own studies on household uses of information and communication technology. Morley is not afraid to be critical of his own research and acknowledged the importance to treat information rationally and be objective. He warns against media-centric that based of their study on speculations and predilection towards 'trendy' technologies that tells us 'what new technologies are going to to us,' instead he opts us to 'think about what people do with media technologies'.
"It is evident that we must be cautious about assuming how much difference new media make, given that all communication is mediated and has always been—not least, through language, in the case of face-to- face communication. Failure to attend to this issue is, as Madianou and Miller (2011) argued, the blindspot in many contemporary debates about mediation/mediatization."
This is crucial to our study on Innovative Media Distribution. In the case of Netflix, we must be wary of the fact that Netflix Inc. is cautious of their public image, being able to present an optimistic image is the key to attract sponsors and investors.
"For several years now we have been told that the age of broadcast television, and its couch potatoes, is over and is being replaced by a new form of interactive communications. This is partly a discourse of commercial boosterism driven by companies who hope to profit from these changes."
We must aim to be objective in our study, not to make overly-enthusiastic assumptions and speculations base on un-grounded theories and news articles. Streaming services seems to be the new innovative media that's 'projected to reshape the way we watch television,' however Morley points out that we need to recognise the notion of 'newness is a historical constant' as Marcel Proust puts it, 'The one thing that does not change is that, at any and every time, it appears that there have been 'great changes'..."
Morley. D (2012): Television, Technology, and Culture: A Contextualist Approach, The Communication Review, 15(2), p79-105
Madianou, M., & Miller, D. (2011). Migration and new media. London, England: Routledge.
Study done by Graham Meikle and Sherman Young (2008)
This article in Media International Australia Journal explores some of the issues that are circulating around the idea of television. Meikle and Young touch on how new emerging form of media such as streaming video, online media and file sharing are posing threat to standard model of broadcast television and comes to an acknowledgement in a sense that these new forms are 'unlikely to replace television as we know it, but they will dispace it,' suggesting a gradual shift in the form of television, rather than a radical one. This article is quite short but outlined quite an extensive list of topics surrounding the broad topic of television's shifts and trends, how it's being 'reshaped, re-imagined and reinvented.' As a result, the subjects explored are brief analogues of arguments gathered from various theorists and scholars, hence, informative but not particularly analytical. In terms of our research, I would say that this article can be a good portal for further research into the experts' theories and proposals mentioned in the text. Much of the claims and statement in the text are well informed but still yet to be evaluated. This piece is a good starting point for people who wish to have a brief overview over the industry climate of television. Keep in mind that this article was written in 2008, much of the states and numbers would become outdated. However the theory proposed are still relevant and worth thinking about.
Meikle. G. and Young. S. (2008). Beyond Broadcasting? TV for the Twenty First Centry. Media International Australia. 126, p67-70.
Study done by Jaime J. Weinman (2013)
"Once obsessed with viewers and ratings, the television model these days is all about buzz"
I've avoided including non-academic journal reports in my annotated bibliography, but I find this one quite current and relevant to our research. Published in January this year on Maclean's Magazine, this article gathered various industry expert opinions on the way television show's success are no longer defined by whether or not the show pulls in big numbers in ratings, but rather suggests that the success of a TV show is determined by its ability to generate conversations and attention from the public. Primary drawing on the statements made by Netflix's chief marketing officer, Kelly Bennett and communications officer Jonathan Friedland, Weinman outlines the reasoning behind Netflix's refusal in releasing ratings of their recent 'hit', House of Cards, and discusses Netflix's 'subscriber requisition strategy' proposed by Bennett.
"Our intention is not to release ratings, and that's for a very good reason: we don't have to."
"We'll define the success of these original shows in our own way."
I think this article will work well together with Anthony Smith's article on the analysis of AMC's slow-burn narrative. While Smith's article offers a more academic and theoretical side of the argument; Weinman, on the other hand, provides many applicable statements and discussion gathered from industry insiders that will be very helpful to our research. The arguments presented in the report gave us an overview of the sort of debate and conversation that is happening in the television industry right now.
Jaime, J. W. 2013, Who's watching? Who cares? ; Who's watching? Who cares?, Rogers Publishing Limited, Toronto, Canada, Toronto.
Study done by Trevor Barr (2011)
This article is relavent to our study on Innovative Media Distribution related to Internet Television. Barr focuses on how these new developments in Internet Television may or may not pose threat to IPTV servies (Interent Protocol Television). The text looks specifically into four new American based corporation that are all relative new to television: Netflix, Apple TV, Google TV and Facebook. Keep in mind that this article was written in early 2011 before Netflix's infamous public relation disaster (July, 2011) and the release of the company's first ever original content, House of Cards (2012). During the period of Barr's research, all four services were highly dependent for contents produced by already established television networks in America. Drawing from many statistics and case studies, Barr examine the strength and viewers' responses of each four to evaluate the kind of new experiences each services can offer to the television viewers. This article is written in a very informative way that not only covers information gathered from America but also Australia, which can be very helpful when we are doing research on the differences and similarities between Australia and American innovative distribution media platforms.
Barr, T. (2011). ‘Television’s newcomers: Netflix, Apple, Google and Facebook’. Telecommunications Journal of Australia 61 (4): 60.1-60.10.
Study done by Glen Creeber (2011)
This article is applicable to my research as it answers my fundamental question surrounding the unique aesthetics of television. Drawing from Jason Jacob's The Intimate Screen (2000:28), Creeber starts of the article by outlining the key characteristics of television:
- Live immediacy - television as a means of instant transportation of material. The co-temporality of viewing and event signifies authenticity and realism
- Medium of Intimacy - the delivery of images to the domestic sphere and the visual 'closeness' described by the television close-up. The intimiate form of direct visual address to the viewer in the domestic (familial) home is sometimes seen to set up a new social/communal relationship.
- Television as a hybrid medium - a combination of theatre, newsprint, radio and film: it can do all the things these other media can do, but with the advantages of both the liveness and the intimacy.
"Future TV ma be unrecognisable from today, defined not just by linear TV channels, packaged and scheduled by television executives, but instead will resemble more of a kaleidoscope, thousands of streams of content, some indistinguishable as actual channels. These streams will mix together broadcaster's content and programs, and our viewer's contributions. At its simplest level - audiences will want to organize content the way they want it.They'll add comments to our programs, vote on them, and generally mess about with them." (Jenkins, 2006, p242)
Creeber. G. (2011). It's not TV, it's online drama: The return of the intimate screens . International Journal of Cultural Studies . 14 (6), p591–606.
Jacobs. J. (2000). The Intimate Screen: Early British Television Drama. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Jenkins. H. (2006). Convergence Culture: Where Old Media and New Media Collide. New York: New York University Press.
Study done by Anthony N. Smith (2013)
This article focuses on the economics of AMC's institutional configuration. Building on Jaramillo’s analysis on AMC that stressed the importance of quality content, Anthony Smith also looks into the company but through a different angle that aimed to delve deeper by breaking down the specific qualities that governs many of AMC’s original TV programs.
Slow-Burn Narrative: 'demands a lot of patience,' yet the result is rewarding.
As a result of the deliberated unhurried storytelling, when in comparison to other networks, AMC's programs generally don't generate a large viewerships but instead attracts a smaller group of 'educated' audiences.
"AMC’s ad earnings for Mad Men transmissions are unimpressive when considered in isolation, but the series operates more successfully as a loss-leader product, generating profitability for the complete schedule."
'Profile-Enhancement Strategies': the ways in which quality content can result in a 'halo-effect' that work in favour to AMC, boosting their profile, successfully lurking valuable 'upscale viewers/ blue-chip audiences' that are more desirable to advertisers.
Economic models and content production:
“Television criticism in an era of such multifaceted norms for the medium requires attention to more than its programs and distribution form; it must also consider the specific economic model that undergirds distinctions among broadcast networks, basic cable, and subscription channels—as each circum- scribes a particular nexus of art and commerce. Such criticism must interrogate how institutional context yields particular constraints and abilities” (Lotz, 2007, p. 87).
Traditional broadcast networks and basic cable: revenue comes from ad break (commercial break (pod) influence narrative and editing structure, shifting the overall structure of the episodes)
Subscription channels: revenue comes from subscription, no commercial break (narratives are unrestrained)
This aspect is very interesting and relevant to our study - How consumption and distribution reflects back on the development of media content. Netflix's institution configuration is subscription base, more like HBO, where pulling big numbers in rating aren't as important as producing good contents to attract subscribers. This enable more creative freedom in terms of content creation and i think it would be beneficial for Netflix to explore this notion further.
Anthony. N. S. (2013). Putting the Premium into Basic: Slow-Burn Narratives and the Loss-Leader Function of AMC's Original Drama Series . Television & New Media. 14 (2), p167–183.
Lotz, A. D. 2007a. If it’s not TV, what is it? The case of U.S. subscription television. In Cable visions: Television beyond broadcasting, edited by C. Chris, A. Freitas, and S. Banet-Weiser, 85-102. New York: New York University Press.
It is important to know how to think as well as knowing how to make, but most importantly, we must first learn to be.
Study done by Deborah L. Jaramillo (2013)
HBO - "It's Not TV. It's HBO"
AMC - "Story Matters Here"
ShowTime - "No Limits"
FX - "There is No Box"
Netflix - "Our Goal is to Become HBO, Before They Become Us."
This paper offers a thorough study on the evolution of AMC (American Movie Classics), using interviews with Vlad Wolynetz (former VP of production) as the primary source of reference, outlining some of the major transitions that AMC went through: financial constraints, industrial misfortunes, and changes in leaderships. Through the study, Jaramillo seemed to highlight the importance of quality and branding by using HBO as the role model that exemplified the value of 'taste cultures, quality and art'. Although, the text does not directly mention Netflix, I do believe that there are similarities between AMC and Netflix. With AMC starting out as content distributors that delivers ads-free Classic American films to being forced by competitors to bygone change, and further taking the risk of following HBO's footpath in creating their own original contents, I see a resemblance to the way in which Netflix is also currently undergoing the many changes and transformations that AMC went through. In this case, the text is even more relevant and helpful in aiding our research on Innovative Media Distribution, especially Jaramillo's evaluations on the various theories and analysis proposed by scholars and telecommunication experts. In the companies aim to thrive in the shifting television industry, it is not a battle between the pendulum of creativity and commodification, but more of a correlation of the two. Acknowledging the intricate interrelationship between innovation and quality branding seem to be the crucial factor that helped push companies further, distinguish themselves against the many other akin competitors. This is an ideal starting point for our study where we first focus on the evaluation of content before we jump into our research on the mingled state of flux in television's shifting modes of distribution.
Jaramillo. L. D. (2013). AMC: Stumbling toward a New Television Canon. Television & New Media. 14 (2), p167-183.