New Technologies Essay

To what extent has the internet played a significant role in marketing and exchange of media products in the area you have studied?

Introduction: the internet was available to the public in the late 1980’s and since then it has had a big impact on today’s culture as well as everyone’s way of life. Not only has the internet had a big impact on today’s society, it has also had an impact in the world of film whether that would be: distribution or marketing.

Social Media and Marketing

  • Big part of today’s culture which people of all ages are a part of
  • Social media: Twitter, Snapchat, Youtube
  • Field in England: Twitter accounted for the vast majority of mentions on social media with 94% of total traffic (according to the online conversation monitoring by Brilliant Noise)
  • Field in England: Friday of the release, which represented the vast majority of the 12,000 mentions on social media sites
  • Field in England: Film trended number one on twitter on the day of its release
  • Field in England: 54% of the under-35’s audience said that social media was a primary source of the awareness compared with 35% of the over-35’s
  • Nymphomaniac: The film’s twitter account picked up more than 1,400 followers
  • La La Land: La La Land was huge during its release but, due to the Oscar’s mishap which was trending internationally for a while, it also helped with its publicity and advertising for the film if people were unaware of the film before hand
  • Snapchat: Snapchat puts on sponsored filters – ie Batman v Superman filter
  • Youtube: Almost 5 billion videos are watched everyday so, perfect place to advertise a film. Trailers are uploaded as well as Youtube personalities with a large following interviewing actors of a certain film as well as praising the film — thus persuading the subscriber to go see the film
  • Red State: ‘Smodcast’ was created by Kevin Smith to attract an audience

Distribution 

  • David Brent Life on the Road: Netflix later acquired distribution rights to the film in all territories excluding the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand
  • Special Correspondents: Netflix had pre-bought the global distribution rights to the film for roughly $12 Million
  • Nymphomaniac: Curzon Film World predicted that the theatrical gross would be close to $300K with a strong performance on VOD platforms
  • Nymphomaniac: The various on demand platforms added further net revenues of $71,050
  • A Field in England: Film 4OD – 714, iTunes – 3,133, Virgin Media – 1,746
  • A Field in England: 100,000 embeds of video content in third-party websites
  • Films being distributed online to cinemas internationally instead of being distributed on film – less damaging and can sell tickets more due to wide release

Piracy

  • Since technology, films are pirated more and more with an increase in the knowledge of pirating films
  • Films like ‘La La Land’ and ‘Nymphomaniac’ have been pirated for online usage
  • The Wolf of Wall Street: Most pirated film in 2014 with over 30 million downloads
  • The Guardian states that “almost 30% of Britons are now watching movies illegally online or buying counterfeit DVDs” this is costing the movie industry £500m a year

To what extent has the internet played a significant role in marketing and exchange of media products in the area you have studied?

The internet was available to the public in the early 1980’s and since then, it has had a big impact on today’s culture as well as everyone’s way of life. Not only has the internet had a big impact on society, it has also had an impact in the world of film whether that would be in: distribution or marketing.

The main aspect of the internet which is accessible to people of all ages is: social media. Companies like Twitter, Snapchat and YouTube all have a big part in advertising and marketing certain films. An example of this can be seen for A Field in England where Twitter accounted for the vast majority of mentions on social media with 94% of total traffic (according to the online conversation monitoring by Brilliant Noise). Social media gives publicity to certain stories and events so people who had no idea of Wheatley’s film were now aware of it. The social media side to Wheatley’s marketing strategy obviously helped as 54% of the under-35’s audience said that social media was a primary source of film’s awareness. Lars Von Trier’s 2013 film Nymphomaniac also used Twitter to make people aware of the film; the film’s twitter account picked up more than 1400 followers. Another independent film which arguably benefited from Twitter was La La LandLa La Land was huge during its release but, due to the Oscar’s mishap which was trending internationally for a while. Many people who were oblivious to Damien Chazelle’s musical were now familiar so, this unfortunate occurrence perhaps helped with its publicity and advertising. Other forms of social media like Snapchat have sponsored Snapchat filters; this is where the film will pay for a specially designed filter to feature on the app for 24 hours. This symbiosis between films and Snapchat has been used a lot in the past year or so because. there are more than 300 million active users a month – this a great place to market a film. YouTube is another form of social media which has become one of the most competitive websites in the world. With over 5 billion videos watched everyday, film companies have used YouTube to broadcast and market their film. YouTube personalities who are of a specific genre are paid to interview the cast members of certain films or to just generally talk about the chosen film. This form of targeted advertising has become very common over the course of YouTube’s population growth. A type of media which usually involves the internet are podcasts. Podcasts are incredibly popular with the Apple having an app dedicated to them. Kevin Smith attracted an audience for his independent film Red State – named ‘Smodcast’. Evidently, the popularity and extreme use of social media has guided film companies to create a more accessible and easier way for people across the world to become aware of their film.

Distributing films has changed throughout the years with introducing the internet. Ricky Gervais created his iconic character: David Brent. He later brought Brent into the film industry. Netflix has become a big way in which people watch and stream films in video on demand with a small subscription fee. Due to its large audience, Gervais used this to reach out to Netflix’s large following. After the film’s release, Netflix later acquired distribution rights to David Brent: Life on the Road in all territories excluding the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. Gervais’ next film Special Correspondents, had the global distribution rights pre-bought by Netflix for roughly $12 million. This film was straight to Netflix but, it is a fact that the majority of people stream and use subscription VOD to watch films. Nymphomaniac also used VOD to distribute the film. Facts and figures show that the theatrical gross would be close to $300k due to the strong performance on VOD platforms. Furthermore, the various on demand platforms added further net revenues of $71,050 for the erotic film. The independent film genre benefits from VOD greatly. Another example can be shown in A Field in England, not only was there 100,000 embeds of video content in third party websites but, there were 3,133 downloads on iTunes; 714 views on Film 4OD and 1,746 downloads through Virgin Media. VOD services such as Netflix and iTunes have led film companies to broadcast their films to the world not only through cinemas but, through the internet. Because of the growth of media ownership, theatrical exhibition isn’t as important because the film studio is getting their money back through VOD platforms.

The internet has changed the way films are distributed through and between cinemas. For many years, films were distributed into cinema on a reel of film. Since then, technological disruption has allowed cinemas to distribute films through protected files and services internationally. It is clear to see that this is a much more convenient way to show the same film in multiple screens across the country as well as, across the world. Because of this, the film industry has benefited immensely. This service is not only convenient but, safe. When films were transported and distributed in big reels, it was incredibly easy to damage and destroy the film. The internet has allowed the film to be distributed on protected files. Even though this is arguably safe, the internet has opened up many opportunities for the one of the most common crimes to date: pirating. ‘The Guardian’ states that “almost 30% of Britons are now watching movies illegally online or buying counterfeit DVDs”. Pirating is incredibly cheap for people at home to do and since cinemas are becoming notorious for the extortionate rates they are charging, the amounting of people pirating films illegally is continuously growing. In 2014, The Wolf of Wall Street was the most pirated film with over 30 million downloads and since then, films like Nymphomaniac and La La Land have all been shared on illegal streaming sites. This has become a huge disadvantage to the film industry with a massive loss of £500 million a year. Even though the internet has changed the way we watch films, there are obviously some bad effects which occur because of this phenomenon.

Whether its a Hollywood blockbuster or an independent film from a first time director, the internet has helped the film industry a substantial amount. Social media has allowed a film to be marketed to a huge following at once and the internet has allowed distribution between cinemas easier and more efficient. Even though there are many advantages of the internet integrating with the film industry, there are some weaknesses such as: pirating and illegal streaming.