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Online streaming will transform media consumption

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Subject

Online streaming.

Significance

US media firms CBS and Viacom announced their merger yesterday, having split in 2006; this will create a 30-billion-dollar entity and economies of scale that will help the firm compete in online streaming. The UK telecoms regulator Ofcom’s annual media review on August 7 shows that 40% of viewers now watch TV and film largely through online video. Indeed, streaming on online platforms such as Twitch is becoming more popular than conventional media forms, and UK subscriptions to streaming services overtook subscriptions to traditional TV services for the first time last year.

Impacts

  • Competition will intensify -- AT&T, Comcast, Disney and Apple are starting streaming services to compete with Amazon, CBS, Hulu and Netflix.
  • Online streaming has vast potential beyond the media, for example in training in sectors such as medicine, and in workplaces more broadly.
  • Insufficient regulation of appropriate online content and advertising risks creating obstacles that may curb the rise of streaming.
  • Methods will improve to monitor and punish illegal streaming, but cybersecurity will still struggle to keep pace.
  • The EU General Data Protection Regulation is causing reports of data breaches to rise, risking reduced user faith in online platforms.
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