The continuing dilemma of multiple streaming platforms


Photo: primetimer

Rebekah Hedeen, Assistant Features Editor

In the age of technology and endless forms of streaming, the question of diversification appears and entertains the idea of fewer streaming services and the possibility of ads. In recent years, streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu have grown rapidly and their success is largely due to the convenience of having what you want when you want it.

One side effect of these streaming services is that there are so many different services with thousands of movies and most do not allow others to play the same movies as themselves. 

Diversification of streaming services would allow two or more services to hold the same show instead of waiting for the contract to run out before running it on another platform.  The Office, for example, is set to stop airing on Netflix in 2021 and from there it will be held by NBC.

According to Forbes Media, “The Ripple Effect Of Streaming Video,” the effectiveness of streaming services has caused many other popular sites to create their own types of content. Examples Forbes used were the additions of Disney Plus, Walmart’s Vudu and even Snapchat’s Snap Originals. 

“I think there comes a point where there are far too many [streaming services] and you end up needing five different accounts for five different streaming services,” junior Ryan Chickering said.

Many agree that the diversification of streaming services would be helpful to lower costs as many have more than one subscription. 

“I think the diversification of streaming platforms is a good thing,” junior Madeline Kattato said. “For example, I would say that Netflix diversified when the platform started making it’s original shows and movies. These Netflix originals were really successful and I personally enjoy them.”

While noting the diversification of a streaming service within itself is important, questioning whether the diversification among all platforms is, too. It causes speculation concerning the competitive level and whether the platforms will stay ad free. 

“I don’t think it is necessarily a bad thing, it can be annoying when your favorite series gets removed from the streaming service you pay for,” junior Emily Julian said. “People may feel forced to spend more money to subscribe to yet another streaming service just for one show.”

By diversifying streaming services, users could potentially view their favorite show easily without spending more. This could create competition, however, pushing some services out of business or as Forbes draws attention to, forcing services such as Netflix to stream ads.

“I personally would enjoy shows and movies being held on two platforms for my own convenience,” Kattato said. “However, I think this could cause too much competition.”

The argument of diversifying streaming services allows us to understand that while it may be a good idea, there could also be repercussions.

“The diversification of streaming causes me to look more towards free entertainment services such as YouTube or Twitch,” Chickering said. “Globally, I think we’ll see the erasure of cable TV any time now in favor of streaming services.”

The possibility of the diversification of services is certainly possible but whether or not each major company will agree to it or not is the dilemma.

“I think that if streaming services collaborated more, people may be more inclined to subscribe because people could get double the streaming material for less money,” Julian said. “I would be more likely to purchase another streaming service if they had more shows to offer.”