Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Here’s Why Hollywood Needs UltraViolet — Or Something — To Work

Hollywood is rolling out UltraViolet, its homegrown cloud/locker scheme that may or may not compete with the ones Apple and Amazon are rolling out. But the studios very much need one of these things to work — and by “work” I mean “convince people to spend more money on movies and TV shows they watch at home.”

Because right now, things don’t look good at all. BTIG’s Rich Greenfield (registration required) lays it out in this grim chart: In the first half of the year, U.S. spending on home entertainment dropped 5.1 percent.

And it’s not because people don’t like to watch TV shows and movies at home: Spending on rentals, primarily via Netflix and Redbox, is up 10.9 percent. But that’s not enough to counter a 17.2 percent drop in movie and TV show purchases. Note that digital sales, primarily via Apple’s iTunes, barely make a dent.

[Image credit: Fekete Tibor/Shutterstock.]


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald