Cory Doctorow presents a good discussion on storytelling (in Cinema and TV) and why it is formed and shaped the way it is (30 minute programs / 8 mins of ads).
I don’t know the detailed of history of how we struck up or evolved to this formula, but it is clear that the technology and economic models would have influenced this form.
With the Internet, do the options of storytelling change? Does the architecture change (check out Henry Jenkins‘ research of the architecture of storytelling)?
Of course storytelling changes. Cory points out 10 secs – 10 mins on YouTube clearly works, and no doubt the options for interactive formats and the direct and immediate influence of a community of viewers (or participants) can completey blow up the number of options available.
But, does the economic and technology architecture of advertising (and all marketing in fact) need to change in line with the storytelling? Ad formats, 8 mins of 30 second spots every 30 mins is the norm. Display ads on the internet are the norm. Does a non-inert platform like the internet blow up the number of options for advertising. Of course it does. Do the economics change when you have 100,000 people deeply interacting with your show vs 1,000,000 just watching? Of course it does.
So why on every video site out there, are we sticking with a fusion of the same 30 second spots and internet display advertising? Even shorter versions of spot ads running at 5 or 15 seconds are basically the same thing.
Although current broadcast formats show good CPMs, with sites like Hulu only showing 2 mins of ads every 30, the mistake producers and publishers are making is relying on previous marketing architectures. The model of distribution and thus the economics of internet video are not the same as broadcast TV. Relying on previous TV or Internet ad formats for new show formats is risky.
As the supply of video continues to explode (just adding YouTube increases Worldwide Video programming output by 1.4x)
we need to address the architecture of marketing to ensure we effectively and efficiently generate revenue from each viewer and participant.