‘House of Cards’ Trailer Is Finally Released on Youtube, but What is Netflix Distribution Strategy?
David Fincher directed the pilot, Kevin Spacey is the lead actor and we are all conscious that Netflix starting producing original content to have sole control on its distribution is a big big step that can become a game changer in the way we consume “TV” (for lack of a better word).
Three days ago, the only problem was that the trailer was only available to Netflix users in US, Canada, Latin America, UK, Sweden, Finland and Norway.
Two days ago, House of Cards trailer was finally released on Youtube, which makes sense if we assume Netflix decided to produce original content to attract more customers. Because then you might want to let the-people-of-the-world have a look at what they are/will be missing by not paying $xx/month, right Netflix?
(wave back to Kevin… if you have a Netflix Membership)
I know my tone can lead you to think otherwise so let me clarify one point : I love Netflix. It is part of the thing that made me really happy when I was living in America and that I miss on a daily basis now that I no longer have access to it.
The reason I love Netflix’s concept so much is because it puts everybody on an equal foot. You no longer need to live in a big city nor to ruin yourself with prohibitive cable fees to have access to high quality content and, most importantly, a diversified content. In today’s globalized world it only makes sense to me that people should have the same chances when it comes to cultural content.
Netflix producing original content makes so much sense too. It is a brilliant move, especially since they are proving to be ambitious quality content-wise. (see House of Cards trailer below for more on that).
So, what’s the trouble, Bob?
On a global scale, probably none, but what troubles me is that it doesn’t seem Netflix is planning to do anything special with its original content. Sure, it will likely bring more customers in the countries that have Netflix, and Netflix won’t be depending on fluctuating cable and networks’ fees, but shouldn’t it be more than that?
Following the idea that you just need an Internet connection to have access to Netflix’s content, what prevents them from opening a parallel worldwide channel for their original content?
But why preventing millions of people from paying to watch your original content ? (especially when you are putting the effort and money to make it quality content)
Let’s face it, a lot of people will watch House of Cards without paying for it, because they are not allowed to. (how ridiculous does that sound? Very ridiculous is the answer you’re looking for.)
It is the same story with HBO‘s Game of Thrones. It is known to have been one of the most pirated TV shows this year, and it is fair to think a huge chunk of people would gladly pay to watch it in HD through a legal channel if they were given the opportunity to.
It is understandable for forty-year old HBO not to kill its classic distribution system for few hits, and I’m sure the logistic is complicated, but I do wish Netflix had planned to open a no-frontiers channel along with the House of Cards release, since they are building their distribution strategy from ground zero.
Maybe they will. Chances are, if they were thinking of doing it (that early or at all), we would have heard about it already.
The future will tell us more (unless we die before) in the meantime, if you have not seen it yet, enjoy House of Cards trailer and get excited or frustrated by the glimpse of what you will or won’t watch starting February 1st:
To be continued…
*Lilyhammer was technically the first original content show released, but being a Norwegian co-production, it was first released in Norway.