MyTHR August 2008


Movies aren't a hot ticket yet in the online video space, according to a new study conducted by Nielsen PreView.

Streaming of movie-related content, which is defined as any video programming that shows the entirety or parts of a movie like a trailer, is still fairly insignificant but inching up. Of all media content being streamed, less than 1% is related to movies (see Figure 1).

The study, undertaken on behalf of readers who recently voted for such a subject to be explored via the home page's MyTHR module, found that 64% of those who streamed film-related content did so during only one month over a seven-month period from November 2007 to May 2008 (see Figure 2).

In addition, only 5% of online users are streaming any kind of movie content per month. Among them, an average user streams only 2 minutes per month, another indication that movie content streaming is still at a cherry-picking stage.

Despite the insignificant role it plays, movie-content streaming does show signs of growth. Compared to other types of content, movie streaming is growing at a much faster pace, averaging 13% per month, than consumer-generated media, at a rate of 2%. Keep in mind, though, that CGM accounts for about half (49%) of total content streamed.

Interestingly, the increase in streaming of movie content isn't driven by an increasing amount of viewers, as the proportion of movie-content streamers remained steady during the seven-month period Nielsen tracked, from 4.9% to 6.0% of total streamers.

It is likely that this growth is partially attributable to movie-content streamers being more engaged in the practice, despite the fact that the percentage of those who stream more than 30 minutes per month has grown just 4% over the past seven months (see Figure 3).

Jumpstarting film content online will likely take more involvement from the Hollywood studios. While film trailers remain a popular draw on Web portals from YouTube to AOL, online film distribution is still struggling to find traction given the recent demise of two such ventures, Vongo and Clickstar.

However, a deal announced in July between Lionsgate and YouTube could point the way for more film-related content online. The ad revenue-sharing pact -- expected to be the first of more such pacts with major studios -- calls for the addition of more clips from Lionsgate's library.