Strike Bumps Online Video Numbers?


Is the lack of new stuff on TV due to the writers’ strike driving people online? We’ve been posing that question to the web analytics firms since the strike started in November, but until now, nobody had been willing to call it. Today, however, the BBC quotes Nielsen analyst Alex Burmaster as making the tentative connection: YouTube traffic has risen 18 percent in the last two months, while Crackle has doubled its audience, according to the firm’s estimates.

“That is greater growth than you would normally see in such a short period and the strike could be a possible factor,” said Nielsen analyst Alex Burmaster.

We’ll give all the analysts a call today and see if we can turn up anything more conclusive.



I would love to know if there’s been a bump specifically for scripted serial content online, or if people are just killing time elsewhere (internet as opposed to TV). As the producer of a scripted half hour internet sitcom (‘Space Wasters’) I hope for the former, but fear the latter is more likely.

Liz Gannes

Frank — I am looking at that question too, will post when I have info from a few more of the analytics firms. Their estimates are always so different, so I want to talk to a few of them before calling it a trend.

James Gardiner

I would attribute it a little to the strike.
Mailny because of the amount of media attention which mateialized this option in the minds of the consumer.
Ie if they get bored with TV, which happens even normally, going to the web is more likely to be what pops into their minds.

And secondly, I may be in Australia, but there has definatly been a reasonable drop back in new show content. Probably trying to stretch it out in some ways.


Frank Sinton

We’ve seen growth too, but i don’t attribute it to the strike. It is just a general trend – we didn’t see some huge bump all of a sudden, but did experience 10X growth over the course of 2007.

Also, I would like to know – did,, etc get a bump in the same time period too?

Bill G

I highly doubt the strike is the reason for that growth.

The lack of scripted shows from the writer’s strike is just now beginning to bite. By mid-February the strike effects will be in full force.

But you ask a Nielsen analyst why something happens and is it any surprise the answer has something to do with TV?

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