Internet Video Distribution Survey - Some Interim Analysis

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Our global Internet Video Distribution Survey is progressing nicely and we are collecting some very interesting data. (Background here. You can take part directly here, and you'll get a summary of the analysis).

One question we're asking our pool of experts is: "In your geography, on balance, how do you think Internet video will affect traditional video distribution?"

By a large margin (61%), our respondents expect online video to cannibalise traditional video distribution.

The content industry is being trapped in a classic game of Prisoners' Dilemma:

- if I keep my content off the Internet then my content will be pirated, and I will lose income from my traditional revenues?
- but if I make my content available on the Internet and then it will cannibalise my traditional audience making it less valuable. Will my online revenues make up for this cannibalisation?
Which is the best, or least painful choice?

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Interestingly the further up the respondent is in the value chain, the more pessimistic they seem to be.

However, the device manufacturers seem really positive - they would be, wouldn't they? They need online content to make their new generation of devices look more attractive.

We've also had some interesting comments which we will analyzing in more detail as part of a larger report:
- "There will be increases in some areas but overall there are a limited number of eyeballs and hours in a day." - demand for leisure and the allocation of time amongst competing activities is a complex issue, but one worthy of exploration.
- "We already have tons of data showing even the early adopters use this to catch up with broadcast and as a complement rather than replacement for traditional forms of distribution" - the bull case
- "Every 25 years a new generation rises, cannibalising previous generations. When cables/satellite entered the market, traditional TV was shaken. That was in the 1980s', 25 years ago..." - the bear case.

Please complete the survey and share your thoughts here. We believe in the wisdom of crowds!

[Ed. We'll be presenting a summary analysis and discussing it with industry leaders at the Telco 2.0 event on 4-5 November, London.]