Mapping the core actors and flows in streaming video services: What Netflix can tell us about these new media networks
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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The popular video streaming services are complex technological and economic systems, comprising parts that have not received much scholarly attention. We provide an overview of the main technologies used when streaming television from production to the viewers, the main players that are involved, and the revenue flows between them. Our case is Netflix, which we studied through company reports, industry reports, and press accounts. It is mapped as five sets of actors: content providers, Netflix itself, primary dis- tribution, secondary distribution, and device makers. Between these we observe four flows: video, intellectual property rights, revenue, and data. We find that streaming services are “new beasts”, very reliant on external partners, and with a strong focus on technology. They may not be just media companies or technol- ogy companies but somewhere in between. Scholarly or juridical comparisons with legacy players may hide these aspects.
Under embargo until: 2021-05-08