Stern's Next Money Grab Revealed - Subscription-Based Internet TV!!!

Discussion in 'The Howard Stern Show' started by Beffquus, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. Beffquus

    Beffquus Scripta sunt in stellis Gold

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    From today's NY Times.

    The quick version: Company is named Whalerock, follows Glenn Beck's model, cuts out the traditional middleman programmers like Sirius or TV networks, plans to have 18-20 "channels" by 2018, wouldn't necessarily mean Stern leaves Sirius, pricing decisions "still being made."

    Interesting quote: "As for Mr. Stern’s hub, Don Buchwald, Mr. Stern’s longtime agent, in an email called Mr. Braun an executive “with great creative insight to the trends of the entertainment industry” but otherwise declined to comment on the Whalerock endeavor."

    What's a sim card, Robin?

    Full article below, but you don't really need to read it unless you're terribly bored (i.e. listening to THSS).

    Coming Soon: Web Networks for a Bevy of Celebrities

    SANTA MONICA, Calif. — An under-the-radar media company here called Whalerock could become a threat to the entertainment establishment.

    Following the cut-out-the-middleman model pioneered by Glenn Beck, who left Fox News in 2011 to start his own subscription-based Internet television channel, Whalerock Industries has made deals to create similar personal networks for some big names: the Kardashian sisters, Howard Stern and the rap star Tyler, the Creator.

    These channels, set to arrive in the coming months and available via the web and mobile app, will offer a mix of paid and free programming, said Lloyd Braun, the owner of Whalerock and a former senior executive at ABC and Yahoo. Depending on the channel, offerings will eventually include music, video, exclusive photos, interviews, merchandise, games and other “premium” content, Mr. Braun said.

    Whalerock’s longer-term goal is to shift the power — and the lion’s share of the profit — away from traditional media companies and toward talent. Mr. Beck has an estimated 400,000 subscribers paying $9.95 a month for TheBlaze TV, his streaming network, and continues to host his traditional radio show. Whalerock is now trying to burst through the door he cracked open. Mr. Braun made it clear that the goal is for “the ultimate control” to lie with artists, not media companies

    He said that these “media hubs” should not antagonize the likes of NBCUniversal’s E! network (home to “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”), Sirius XM Radio (Mr. Stern’s home since 2006) and Sony Music Entertainment (Tyler, the Creator’s label). “We are well aware that current business deals exist, and we respect them,” Mr. Braun said.

    The Kardashians, for instance, will continue to make their cable show, and Mr. Stern may renew his expiring contract with Sirius. “Done right, we are going to show how premium artists who want to control their media life and engage directly with their audiences can work synergistically with traditional media, resulting in a better business for everybody,” Mr. Braun said this month.

    Still, this is unproved territory. Among the many things that could go wrong: Fans could quickly tire of endless à la carte payments, which have a way of adding up in a hurry. Mr. Braun’s plans require a real dedication over the long term from the celebrity participants. And some analysts point out that demand may be much less than anticipated; millions of followers on Twitter do not guarantee millions or even thousands of subscribers.

    But Richard Greenfield, a media analyst at BTIG Research, said that Whalerock’s business was threatening to traditional programmers. “For the artists who have the chutzpah to break free of the traditional models, there is a huge opportunity,” he said, especially while there are still relatively few direct-to-consumer channels being offered.

    Mr. Braun said he planned to create app-based channels for 12 to 20 performers and brands by 2018. If he succeeds, Whalerock could bundle the channels together in various configurations and make distribution deals with cable providers and services like Apple TV, just as Viacom and Time Warner do today with networks like MTV and CNN.

    “I would rather be a guinea pig than spend my career rearranging the chairs on the Titanic,” said Christian Clancy, a music manager whose clients include Tyler Okonma, a.k.a. Tyler, the Creator. “The problem for artists like Tyler is that once they get done paying all of these middlemen, they’re not left with much.”

    There still is a middleman, of course: Mr. Braun, whose company will handle things like ad sales, design, marketing, e-commerce, technology infrastructure and video production. Whalerock will make money by taking a cut of the net revenue. Mr. Braun declined to be more specific; terms vary depending on the client.

    For the record, Mr. Braun, a Hollywood character if there ever was one, often speaking in a near shout and gesticulating wildly, does not see himself as a middleman.

    “We’re not a middle,” he said. “We’re a facilitator.” (Fun fact: Mr. Braun was the inspiration for a recurring character, Lloyd Braun, on “Seinfeld.”)

    Mr. Okonma’s app will roll out by June, according to Jeff Berman, Whalerock’s president. Channels for each Kardashian sister — Kim, Khloe, Kourtney, Kendall and Kylie — and Mr. Stern will follow in the months afterward.

    “Each will look really, really specific,” said Raphy Fedida, Whalerock’s head of design.

    Photo
    [​IMG]
    Howard SternCreditEvan Agostini/Associated Press
    Pricing decisions are still being made. Nearly all of the channels will be supported by advertising and free to consumers. Many will also sell subscriptions for premium offerings and special offers, like a pay-per-view concert or exclusive merchandise.

    Programming is similarly a work in progress. But Kim Kardashian West’s hub, for instance, is expected to offer photos, video and, perhaps, city guides — where she ate, where she slept — and makeup tutorials.

    “I see what we do on social media as the appetizer,” said Khloe Kardashian. “This is the whole dinner. Not everything we do can be captured in an Instagram shot.” Added Kim Kardashian West: “This isn’t about doing another website. It’s about creating a digital destination.”

    (Skeptics who wonder whether there will be continued demand for Ms. Kardashian West, who is anything but underexposed, might consider the surprise popularity of her smartphone game, Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. It generated $74.3 million in 2014, ranking it as one the biggest mobile gaming hits of the year, according to its maker, Glu Mobile.)

    As for Mr. Stern’s hub, Don Buchwald, Mr. Stern’s longtime agent, in an email called Mr. Braun an executive “with great creative insight to the trends of the entertainment industry” but otherwise declined to comment on the Whalerock endeavor.

    Founded in 2007 as BermanBraun — Mr. Braun bought out his original partner, Gail Berman, in early 2014 — Whalerock has about 170 employees. The company is best known for creating a portfolio of websites like Wonderwall, focused on celebrity news, and Purple Clover, a site aimed at people over the age of 50.

    Whalerock also has a television and movie division. Projects include “BattleBots,” a robot reality show for ABC, and an espionage thriller in partnership with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer called “I Am Pilgrim.” Mr. Braun is also a producer of “Fish in the Dark,” Larry David’s new Broadway comedy.

    Given its dual focus on technology and traditional entertainment, Whalerock may be uniquely positioned to pursue direct-to-consumer channels.

    “Most of the traditional media companies are in the business of protecting the status quo,” Mr. Clancy said. “That’s definitely not Whalerock.”

    Continue reading the main story
    Continue reading the main story

    (Skeptics who wonder whether there will be continued demand for Ms. Kardashian West, who is anything but underexposed, might consider the surprise popularity of her smartphone game, Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. It generated $74.3 million in 2014, ranking it as one the biggest mobile gaming hits of the year, according to its maker, Glu Mobile.)

    As for Mr. Stern’s hub, Don Buchwald, Mr. Stern’s longtime agent, in an email called Mr. Braun an executive “with great creative insight to the trends of the entertainment industry” but otherwise declined to comment on the Whalerock endeavor.

    Founded in 2007 as BermanBraun — Mr. Braun bought out his original partner, Gail Berman, in early 2014 — Whalerock has about 170 employees. The company is best known for creating a portfolio of websites like Wonderwall, focused on celebrity news, and Purple Clover, a site aimed at people over the age of 50.

    Whalerock also has a television and movie division. Projects include “BattleBots,” a robot reality show for ABC, and an espionage thriller in partnership with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer called “I Am Pilgrim.” Mr. Braun is also a producer of “Fish in the Dark,” Larry David’s new Broadway comedy.

    Given its dual focus on technology and traditional entertainment, Whalerock may be uniquely positioned to pursue direct-to-consumer channels.

    “Most of the traditional media companies are in the business of protecting the status quo,” Mr. Clancy said. “That’s definitely not Whalerock.”
     
  2. Butcher

    Butcher ?

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    They promised I would be a partner, Robin
     
  3. PI Nate

    PI Nate Disenfranchised since 1984... Gold

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    :coffee:
     
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  4. EvolvedMarbles

    EvolvedMarbles Well-Known Member

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    Assuming a deal he likes can be struck, what content could he provide?

    The "engine" that created 100/101 content is stripped to shit. Who's going to pay to watch him press buttons airing zoo bits?

    The Vegas bookies have set the early over/under on Stern-sues-these-guys at 26 months.
     
  5. Rupert Pupkin

    Rupert Pupkin That Ass is Attached to Daniela Lopez Gold

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    "Robin, Artie said that he spent $10,000 for podcast equipment. THERE IS NO FUCKING WAY I'M SPENDING ONE DOLLAR!!!"

    "If they want me, BUILD A FUCKING STUDIO FOR ME !!!

    Robin......."Oh boy"
     
  6. Hank Riner

    Hank Riner Member

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    How long before he sues this company for "contract disputes"?
     
  7. newcastlefan

    newcastlefan גֵּרְשֹׁם VIP

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    "Mr. Beck has an estimated 400,000 subscribers paying $9.95 a month for TheBlaze TV,"

    How do you have an estimated number of paid subscribers? take the amount of money you collect in a month and divide it by 9.95. the only reason to say "estimated" is because you know the number you cite is BS.
     
  8. Calloused Shins

    Calloused Shins Well-Known Member

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    I'd assume what he did for the first 30 some years on radio? Before he felt cheated by Sirius...


     
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  9. Mr Fantastic

    Mr Fantastic Found Nemo VIP

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    Looks like he just sharted.



    [​IMG]
     
  10. Yeahnolisten

    Yeahnolisten Well-Known Member

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    9.95xmarianne, bobo=19.90
     
  11. Scott

    Scott Masshole Staff Member

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    Does Glenn Beck do more than 8 hours a month? Even if Howard was still funny I couldn't see paying $10 a month. He barely does live shows. Do you still have to pay for July and December when he takes the month off?
     
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  12. Pigsaw

    Pigsaw Well-Known Member

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    His lawyers are already writing up the papers.
     
  13. PI Nate

    PI Nate Disenfranchised since 1984... Gold

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    I'd love to see this to happen, and learn exactly how many subs he really has...:lmao:
     
  14. EvolvedMarbles

    EvolvedMarbles Well-Known Member

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    Maybe people can easily "flip a switch" and cancel subs and/or people join for promo periods so the number moves up and down a range all the time.
     
  15. Nemo

    Nemo Beer Can Thick Gold

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    I can't read all that
    :bigcry:
     
  16. PI Nate

    PI Nate Disenfranchised since 1984... Gold

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    its a form letter with the defendant and date left blank...:oy2:
     
  17. Nemo

    Nemo Beer Can Thick Gold

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    The Blaze is a channel on Cablevision
    It is also carried by other TV providers
     
  18. TallTyrion

    TallTyrion Triggered like a mofo VIP

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    Who besides MFB will pay for that content honestly at this point? He's ripped off all of his other loyal listeners....
     
  19. Beffquus

    Beffquus Scripta sunt in stellis Gold

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    Amen, brother! I suffered for you and hit the highlights.
     
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  20. MyLazyHand

    MyLazyHand Russia and France Know What to Do

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    No doubt it's in the works.


    May I also point out that Howard Stern has "started" dozens of projects which have gone nowhere at all.
     
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