The Writers Guild is picketing in Rockefeller Center right now.
A chance for “millions to bloom?,” not so much. Few are choosing online entertainment over TV. Online consumption of content is tied very heavily to television viewing. While people may shift their focus online when Conan goes dark they’re not going to find a better experience and abandon TV.
Television still has the advantage of promotion, something existing online producers have struggled to compete with. The largest online content distribution companies, Next New Networks for instance are still short on eyeballs.
Online video prime time is in the afternoon when people are at work, which makes sense because most of what’s being consumed is short form content, not big-budget series. Most of the online video traffic at night is on porn; that industry should get a good boost from this outage.
The problem is that original programming created for the web is on the whole low-budget, short-form and small screen, offering a very different viewer experience than the lean back we get from TV.
I’m re-upping on the Wire, and catching up where I left off with Heroes last season, not going online. If anyone knows of original online content worth watching that provides the lean-back experience let me know.