2015: Netflix, Hulu, and – Yahoo?
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The accessibility of TV shows over the Internet has revolutionized our culture. With our new expectations of instant gratification, marketing schemes for corporations have been forced to evolve; notably, in response to these new market pressures, businesses have expanded to allow for streaming from mobile devices and televisions. HBO Go, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon: everyday contrivances that have taken the place of searching through the TV Guide or heading out to Blockbuster. What you may not know is that Yahoo Screen (formerly Yahoo Video) has been around since 2006, providing similar services as the aforementioned sites. In late April of this year, Yahoo announced its launching of several original series, available exclusively on their host website and mobile app. The two new shows are set to be released in 2015.
Paul Feig, creator of the first show, “Other Space,” described his work as “a real, honest-to-God, funny sci-fi series about a group of rookie space explorers.” Known for Bridesmaids, Feig has been previously nominated for several Emmys for his work on “The Office.” The other Yahoo original show, “Sin City Saints,” is directed by Emmy-nominated Bryan Gordon (“Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Party Down”) and produced by Michael Tollin (“One Tree Hill,” Varsity Blues). This “sophisticated, single-camera comedy” is about a business mogul of Silicon Valley and the behind-the-scenes struggles he faces trying to run a Las Vegas basketball expansion team.
The two Yahoo shows, both 30-minute-episode comedies, will hopefully appeal to multiple audiences. Eight episodes of each show have already been commissioned. They will be released to Yahoo Screen all at once to allow viewers to binge right away.
As a search engine, Yahoo faces rivals Google and Bing. By pushing other facets of their company, they challenge websites that have become well-established sources for TV and movie streaming. Now, releasing original shows, similar to the way Netflix launched “Arrested Development” and “House of Cards,” Yahoo hopes to emphasize the TV aspect of its company. Whether this is a smart maneuver or not remains to be seen. Is Yahoo increasing its appeal or confusing its identity? In targeting an audience, will they lose value as a search engine? The results rest on “Other Space” and “Sin City Saints.”
With its original shows, Yahoo Screen hopes to compete with rivals of Internet TV watching.