“London Hearts,” the flagship program of Tele-TV since 1999, has also been shortened to 30 minutes, half the length of the previous program. It is believed that this is also an effort to make the program more accessible on TVer.
“TVer,” a video streaming service that has mainly offered missed programs and almost no real-time streaming, has lifted the ban on simultaneous streaming with TV broadcasts by 10 commercial TV stations in Tokyo and Osaka. The service has become a hot topic of conversation.
“In the past, household viewership ratings were an indicator of hits, but due to changes in viewing styles and other factors, sponsors are now concerned about core viewership ratings, which refer to viewers aged 49 or younger. However, many younger generations do not own a TV set themselves. This is the reason behind the decision to lift the ban on simultaneous broadcasts. Currently, programs broadcast after 7 p.m. are covered, but depending on the response, there is a possibility that all programs will be covered,” said an advertising agency official.
A broadcaster points out that the lifting of the ban on simultaneous distribution has brought about changes in the production scene.
“The method is known as “straddling commercials,” which is said to have been created by Kazuo Gomi, former producer of NTV’s “The God of Entertainment.“ This method has taken root in the Japanese TV industry as a way to keep viewers engaged. However, this method makes viewers watching on their smartphones feel more uncomfortable. Each station is experimenting with different ways of presenting their programs.”
Many of the younger generation, known as “Generation Z,” watch content in fast-forward mode using the double-speed function, and this has led to changes in broadcast times and other aspects of the content.
This spring, TV Asahi shortened the duration of “London Hearts” and “Geki Rare-san” from one hour to 30 minutes, which is symbolic of the change. TV Asahi has been broadcasting “Barabara Daisakusen,” a 20-minute program in three parts in the late-night slot on weekdays since 2008. It has been well received by viewers who have missed it because it is easy to watch even on a smartphone. Following the success of TV Asahi, each station is adopting this style of broadcasting multiple short programs.
“Wednesday’s Downtown” (TBS) is also popular with the younger generation because each theory is short. I think we will see an increase in programs like mini-slots (6 minutes) provided by one company, as people are looking for programs that can be cut out and viewed on the web.” (Director of a production company)
A producer at a key station analyzes, “As simultaneous distribution takes root, some programs will disappear.”
“In many cases, music cannot be distributed over the Internet due to rights issues. Therefore, not only retrospective programs such as “Masterpieces of the Showa and Heisei eras,” but also pure music programs will decrease. Also, “World’s Most Shocking Video” programs will struggle with simultaneous distribution because they introduce videos that have already become popular on the Internet. Pure information programs will also lose out to the speed and volume of information on the Internet, so I see them being eliminated.”
The introduction of core ratings led to the graduation of some big-name talents who were not popular with young people, and the lifting of the ban on simultaneous distribution is likely to further accelerate the rejuvenation of the TV industry.
“The lifting of the ban on simultaneous distribution is likely to accelerate the rejuvenation of the TV industry. The trend to use influential social networking personalities and influencers has become stronger. Talent and entertainment agencies are acutely aware of this, so they cannot stop using SNS even if online slander becomes a social problem. Conversely, it has become difficult to cast talent who are not “buzzworthy” even if they are talented,” said a producer at a key station.
Simultaneous distribution may be the savior or the destroyer of the TV industry.
From the June 3, 2022 issue of FRIDAY