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This is Paul Hirsch

Paul Hirsch

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Network TV and Basic Cable Should Be Very Worried

I don’t personally care who gets honored for what on Hollywood awards shows. I rarely watch awards shows, and when I do, it’s to learn more about entertainment I might want to check out – not to see awards get passed around. But I do find that these awards shows can be informative in other ways. Here’s a great example – a sign of the times that traditional TV cannot afford to ignore.

In the 2017 SAG awards for TV shows, every single category featured a MAJORITY of nominees from a streaming service (Netflix, Amazon, etc.) or a premium network (HBO, Showtime, etc.) that can be accessed independent of a cable/satellite company.

One out of eight awards went to a basic cable TV network (FX). Zero went to a major broadcast network (ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox).

Either the awards system is “rigged” against traditional TV (it’s not), or cable companies and network TVshould be very, very worried about their future.

Having some background in broadcast media, I find this quite interesting. If you care, here’s a breakdown of the SAG awards, showing how badly traditional TV is performing.

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1) Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a drama series:
– Of the five shows, four of them are only available through a streaming or premium subscription service. The remaining one, Downton Abbey, is on PBS.
Winner: Netflix

2) Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
– Three out of five are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: Netflix

3) Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
– ALL FIVE are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: Netflix

4) Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
– Two out of five are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: Netflix

5) Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
– Three out of five are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: Showtime

6) Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
– ALL FIVE are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: HBO

7) Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series
– Three out of five are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: HBO

8) Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series
– Three out of five are on streaming or premium subscription services.
Winner: FX