Monday, May 9, 2011

Warners trials direct rentals on Facebook

(Topic suggested by Samantha Bright)

For any media content producer, an issue has been having to use one or more middlemen (each of whom takes a cut off the top)  to get content into the hands of consumers.  The growth of the net has created opportunities to more directly reach consumers (and reach more of them, and more cheaply).  Over the last few years, innovators in various media (academic research papers and music early, more recently photography and book publishing) have explored ways to minimize the path from producer to consumer.
Warner Bros. Pictures is testing a new pathway, this time through Facebook.  The company is offering "The Dark Knight" for rental on Facebook.  The movie, which has already earned Warners a billion dollars worldwide (split with distributors, theaters, retailers, etc.), is being made available at a cost of 30 Facebook credits (about $3), with Facebook taking 1/3.  Purchasers, after downloading, have a 48-hour window for viewing. 
Warners has indicated that it will continue testing both rental and purchase options through Facebook with other titles over the next few months.

Source: "Facebook to Stream Movies,"  WGMT 411NBC News

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