Where Online Shows Shine

Alyssa lists the ways:

Amazon and Netflix don’t have to sell advertising, meaning that they can greenlight shows based on the extensive proprietary data they already have about what their viewers like in scripted programming, without having to try to triage the interests of both viewers and advertisers. Hulu, which sells both advertising and subscriptions, can balance what they think will bring in passionate viewers, and what will attract advertisers. Additionally, Hulu’s interactive tool, which lets viewers tell the service whether ads are relevant to them or not, can help advertisers place spots more effectively than the networks.

Alternative outlets also aren’t restricted by the tyranny of timeslots. They can order as much or as little programming as they like without worrying that picking one show means not going forward with another, or without anxiety about how their shows will fare in specific timeslots, flow together with their existing programming, or play against programming on other networks. The elimination of those restrictions gives alternative outlets enormous freedom that’s unavailable to network television—and an enormous comparative advantage when it comes to attracting the kind of talent who can make subscribers decide to pony up for a service.