Happy Friday! Welcome to Issue 24 of Rerun, your weekly digest of digital storytelling, interactive media and the future of TV curated by Axonista.
In our Top Pick this week ,the NYT say what we’ve been saying for ages; vertical video is here to stay. We look at the power of social to drive TV ratings, some impressive usage numbers from the Periscope streaming app, and the NFL's new stat-laden Xbox One app, plus much more! Let's get straight to it!
Vertical video on the small screen? Not a crime.
We've been saying this for the longest time; vertical video is here to stay. Traditional videographers can complain all they want, but the reality is that as mobile video consumption increases the popularity of vertical video will too. It's already happening. Rather than complain about it, videographers and broadcasters should embrace the challenge of creating content for a new screen! Look forward, not back!
“We’re working to get to 100 percent of our videos vertical,” said Jon Steinberg, the chief executive of The Daily Mail’s North American operations. “We find the engagement much higher. Users are more satisfied, and there’s a higher completion rate on them.”
Future of TV
Terrible Week for TV. Great Week for the Future of TV.
If you’ve been waiting for the TV Of The Future to arrive, that’s great news.
Peter Kafka outlines how the combination of consistently declining viewers, ad revenue and subscribers is being manifested in tanking share prices for US media companies. And as always, Apple is waiting in the wings.
Netflix's brilliant reason for making more mediocre television
Netflix's next phase of content releases will focus less on great TV and more on mediocore TV. There's a huge audience of people who just like to watch procedurals, sitcoms and Adam Sandler movies. As Netflix seeks to expand, its goal is now to lure in that audience and turn them into subscribers.
Unlike network television and cable, Netflix doesn't rely on advertisers. How many people watch any single program is irrelevant. What matters is the number of additional subscribers it attracts. This means, for better and worse, Netflix isn't motivated to make a program for an audience it already has on lock.
Periscope is pulling ahead of its competitors
Live streaming app Periscope released some high usage numbers this week - impressive, given that the app is only 4 months old. Here's the TL;DR version.
- over 10 million registered users
- 2 million daily active users
- over 40 years of video watched per day
Rival app Meerkat last reported 2 million users in May.
The Xbox One's new NFL app is a superfan's dream
The new NFL app on Xbox One brings a fantastic level of interactivity to the TV experience. Aside from video content it features an almost overwhelming amount of real-time statistics, from game scores to detailed stats from the new trackers that every player wears. It also connects up to several fantasy football services, and you can 'pin' the app on the side of the screen so you can play a video game or watch video while keeping an eye on your stats.
Why live tweeting is helping TV networks thrive
For quite some time now, it's been clear that Twitter and TV go hand in hand. Building a social buzz around a show can keep that show active in viewers' minds between seasons and build an audience ahead of season premieres. This post takes a look at the power of leveraging show talent to create a bond with viewers and drive TV ratings and includes a case study by Twitter and the ABC show Scandal.
What TIME learned by trying every VR headset out there
For their August cover story, TIME magazine set out to try every major in-development headset from Facebook’s Oculus, Valve, Sony, Microsoft, Google to many others. They investigate the positions that are currently held by the pioneers of VR and relay their intentions for the future, including Google's Expeditions, sending a 'field trip in a box' to 100 classrooms. The findings include stories of the endearing character, Palmer Luckey, the creator of Oculus Rift, who at the age of 18 kicked off a VR revolution while tinkering in his garage deconstructing smartphones.
How virtual reality can unleash the greatest wave of creativity in human history
Entertainment is about to get as real as real life and nothing is ever going to be the same.
An article from SingularityHub describes aspects of virtual reality that could have a huge impact on how we perceive it in the future. It highlights that VR can create an elusive state of mind called “flow”, where the user is completely engaged within this alternate reality. Virtual reality is becoming ever more present in our world and while interacting with it, our brains come to believe that we are truly immersed.
- How Hollywood tackles VR: Lionsgrate, Starbreeze and WEVR collaborate
- Netflix announces season 2 of its 'Sense8' original with a special collective birthday message
- Apple's live TV service has been postponed, again
Oculus Rift inventor poses on TIME magazine cover, inspires countless memes
The August 17th cover of TIME magazine featured Oculus Rift inventor Palmer Luckey in a somewhat odd pose in front of a staged beach background. The bizarreness of it all inspired countless memes, and TIME have gathered the best ones here for your enjoyment. Have a great weekend!