Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Amazon Adds a Couple More Time Warner Streaming Shows You Can’t See on Netflix

the closerAdd a few more dollars to Jeff Bezos’ streaming video content bill: Amazon has added two Time Warner-owned TV shows to its Prime Instant Video catalog.

Amazon’s Prime Customers can now watch “The Closer,” the crime series that ran for seven years on TNT, and “Falling Skies,” the earthlings-versus-aliens drama that’s still running on Turner’s cable channel.

“The Closer” never got the kind of critical buzz heaped on “Mad Men,” etc., but it was very popular. And “Falling Skies” does pretty well, too.

A press release says viewers can watch “current” episodes of the latter, but that’s a bit misleading — you won’t be able to watch any new shows from the series until at least three months after the end of a new season.

So those are nice additions for Amazon. But not game-changers for the service, which doesn’t appear to be attracting many eyeballs right now — at least not compared to Netflix.

The main reason the deal is worth noting is that it’s another exclusive for Amazon and Time Warner, which has held almost all of its streaming content off of Netflix. Earlier this year, the two companies announced a deal to stream “The West Wing,” “Fringe,” and other Time Warner-owned shows on Amazon.

Meanwhile, the only Time Warner-owned content that you can see via Netflix streaming are shows that ran on the CW Network, which is co-owned by Time Warner and CBS.

But it wouldn’t be a shock to see that change sooner than later: While Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes used to go out of his way to denigrate Reed Hastings’s service, his newish position is that he’s happy to take a Netflix check — once he’s finished selling his stuff everywhere else.

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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