The entertainment industry end-product is no longer just a film, video, or series; its a multidimensional brand of which video is only one component.
Last week I commented on the online home of Arrested Development. Today a more prominent television brand announces a similar product. “SouthParkStudios.com is intended… to be an incubator not only for new applications for characters the likes of Cartman, Kyle, Stan and Kenny, but for new comedy concepts that could one day mature into TV series of their own,” according this New York Times article.
South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker have long bemoaned the costliness of their corporate partner’s digital paralysis. Until today, clips from Comedy Central’s most lucrative franchise were easily accessible online, but illegally uploaded, and offered the creators no additional revenue.
“If I’m overseas and have to get an episode right away,” Mr. Stone lamented, “you literally have to go to an illegal download site.”
In addition to many other benefits, the deal includes a 50-50 split of advertising revenues associated with digital Southpark content shared by the creators and their corporate partner. This marks a major shift in broadcasting; traditional media are beginning to adopt the economics of digital distribution and are allowing creators more control over their content.
Ah, the smell of democratization.