TVNZ ‘interested’ in ad-avoidance paywall

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US pay-TV network AMC is introducing a new option: People can pay $US5 a month to avoid ads with its new streaming service AMC Premiere, according to a report on the NBR pay site, which followed up the story with a call to TVNZ ceo Kevin Kenrick.

Earlier this week, Variety editor-in-chief Andrew Wallenstein hailed it as having “paradigm-shift potential for the TV business.”

He wrote, “It’s an idea of such bold simplicity that it’s hard to understand why we haven’t already seen it in the marketplace years ago: Rather than forcing TV viewers to sit through commercials, why not allow them to pay extra to avoid them?”

So how about it?
AMC made its announcement at about the same time TVNZ launched its new on-demand service, which now also includes livestreaming versions of TV1, TV1 and the other one Duke.

NBR put it to TVNZ boss Kevin Kenrick: “I think it’s well worth exploring,” he said. “But the interesting thing we find – particularly when it comes to entertainment content – is that the content creators and owners typically make a distinction between ad-funded rights and subscription-funded rights.

“And for us, given we’ve got a market-leading linear TV business, we buy ad-funded rights that we can use both on live TV and online.

“For us to start competing with Netflix for those paid rights would get to the point where the economics would become quite strained.”

  • The NBR piece was written by Chris Keall. Read the full story here. Remember, this is a pay site, and you’ll be asked to pay (or choose the month-long free trial).

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