Wednesday, October 12, 2011

By Any Other Name - Perceptions of 'Web Series'

Jeremiah McMillan, writing in the Online Video Insider blog, wonders if labeling your video project a 'Web series' is a good idea.  How is the term perceived by those in the mainline TV production and programming business?
With the explosion of online video hosting, distribution, and use by audiences, and the lowered production costs of digital video, many aspiring writers and producers seem to be embracing the idea of producing "Web series" as a means of getting noticed or generating buzz about their projects.  The Web is fast becoming an effective incubator for TV, game, and other multimedia content development.  The Web is also rapidly becoming an effective platform for promotional activities (trailers, sample episodes, etc.).  And the Web is not only a platform for hosting and distributing content (for whatever purpose), it is also a platform that allows feedback and discussions with consumers, and facilitates the building of audience fan base that has the potential to engage in crowdsourcing of support, both in terms of financing and promotion (through sharing and recommendation of content).  The Web allows a 'Web series' to be many things, and to be used for many purposes.  How it's perceived is likely to be based less on the label applied or its appearance on the Web, but whether the use of the Web is appropriate and effective for your purposes.
McMillan ends his piece with a cautionary note -

But remember: An independent Web series is like any other content being developed or pitched for film or TV.  It's about the content. It's about the story. A good story transcends platforms.
Source - Using The 'Web Series'? Redefining The Push Toward Original Series For Multiple PlatformsOnline Video Insider

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