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As Netflix changes focus, will viewers win or lose?

By Jay Tinsley

Certainly there have been people who have seen the increase in Netflix Originals that have been popping up all throughout Netflix. This increase of Netflix-produced content brings up a question for viewers: Is Netflix becoming less of a content provider and more of a content producer?

According to marketrealist.com, “Netflix expects to spend ~$5 billion on content acquisition in 2016 and $6 billion on content in 2017. Currently, 10% of its content spending is on original content. The company would like to raise that amount to 50%.”

That statement leads the reader to believe that Netflix is much more likely to be producing content rather than simply providing it for viewers.

Is this really the case? Well, according to sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com, it very much is. In their article from April, 2016, they make the statement that “Last year, [Netflix] put out 450 hours of original programming, compared to 401 from Time Warner’s HBO.”

According to the same article, the two companies made the claim that they would produce “roughly 600 hours of original material,” a claim that Netflix managed to own up to, at least according to bgr.com. In bgr.com’s October 2016 article, they make the statement that Netflix is looking to produce 1,000 hours of original content this year; a claim that Netflix will have to work hard to earn up to.

Overall, it really does seem that Netflix is working to produce more original content, but according to Netflix executive David Wells, they are looking to produce content to match up 50/50 with the content they provide.

This statement fills some readers with dismay and others with joy. A lot of viewers prefer to see Netflix Originals, but a lot of viewers also prefer Netflix to simply release content that they are already familiar with. They would much rather see Netflix push out episodes for shows they already know and love.

Viewers should be excited for this. A move in this direction means that Netflix will be working to push out both new content as well as content from shows viewers already enjoy watching.

On the other hand, viewers who are less than thrilled by this change in Netflix’s content aren’t in the wrong. Some newer Netflix Originals haven’t gotten the best ratings from critics, with the newest Marvel Studios/Netflix combo “Iron Fist” earning a measly 19% on rottentomatoes.com.

Whether or not Netflix becomes solely a content producer rather than a provider/producer combo as they are attempting to be, is entirely based around a numbers game. Netflix is a company, and companies want nothing more than to make as much money as is humanly possible.

From the business side of things, whatever brings in the most money is likely what Netflix will go with and continue doing for years to come. Either way, it seems pretty certain that Netflix will manage to keep an entourage paying customers.

 

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