The rise of streamed media

Austin Book

Streamed media is unarguably the future of television. Whether people use Netflix, Amazon Video, Hulu, or all of them, the result is a satisfied customer. Streamed media is the future. There are now even television shows, movies, documentaries, and talk shows released solely on these outlets.

  Cutting the cord is a common phrase as many people no longer see the need to spend more money on expensive cable services when audiences can acquire those same shows for cheaper, easy to navigate video services. It seems that there is nothing wrong with these affordable, quality video services. The obvious question is whether streaming services are beneficial or detrimental to society. While there are a few cons to streamed media, streamed media is beneficial to society.

  Streamed media is extremely convenient due to its incredibly cheap pricing as opposed to expensive cable prices. Depending on the preferred streamed media service, it usually costs about $8 to $9 per month. If a customer has access to all three, that does not even compare to how much people pay for cable. Many people pay near $130 per month for cable when most of the material is available through these services.  “You don’t watch all the channels that you buy [on cable]. On Netflix, you pay the price for everything. Whereas, [on cable] you pay for channels that you’re not even going to watch,” Sr. Mandy Waack said. Some people may not realize that even having a basic pack of television along with these streaming outlets is much cheaper as well. If customers account for the added $44 for basic channels, the overall sum is still far from the standard $130; and, it is essential to have the basic channels because people need these for local news, sporting events, and award shows.

  Also, streamed media is unquestionably easy to access. As long as the device people choose to watch it on is connected to the internet, it is available on phones, laptops, and of course, television. “You don’t even need a TV. You just need a laptop or a phone. Then, you can watch your show or movie,” Waack said. Streaming services’ accessibility and affordability are what makes them so exciting and appealing for customers.

 Though the above are true, there are still some negatives to streamed services. There are a wide variety of movies and programs available on these outlets. However, how customers consume this material is a bit startling. Binge-watching is watching multiple episodes one after another without sizeable breaks. Netflix is known for promoting binge-watching. Every season of a Netflix original series is released as a whole on one day. Netflix strategically releases these seasons on Fridays so that customers will be prone to watching them throughout a weekend. Although it is very popular, it is unsurprisingly unhealthy to sit down for hours on end watching a show. Yet, this technique is very popular among all ages of the respective customers. “I hate commercials, so binge-watching shows has become more of a regular thing,” Waack said. Some WO students are looking forward to some snow days due to the day off of school, but also due to the opportunity to binge-watch a show. “There are definitely some shows that I’m waiting for a snow day to just binge on,” Jr. Kashayla Sidhu said. Binge-watching shows is a seductive way to waste time that brings down the overall reputation of streaming services.

  While binge-watching is too much of a temptation to some customers, the great material makes up for the potential bad decisions. Many shows from these outlets are critically acclaimed, and for good reason. Orange Is the New Black, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and Transparent are just a few of the great original offerings, and each show brings something unique that audiences will not find in another television program. Where else will audiences find themselves transported to a world where they strongly sympathize with prisoners who have committed terrible acts like in Orange Is the New Black? And where else could a viewer find a hilariously uplifting show about an optimistic woman who is freed from a crazy doomsday cult-like in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt?

  “I am addicted to many Netflix shows. I just think that they offer a surprising amount of depth that you can’t really find anywhere else,” Sidhu said. The great material saves streaming services from whatever potential downsides there are to them.

  The future is approaching. Soon, cable will cease to be relevant or it will significantly change to accommodate for its competitors’ approaches in releasing television. Streamed media is a great new alternative to discover new shows and movies. As long as customers don’t binge-watch their time away, society will continually be affected positively by streaming services.