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With how fast the industry is changing, what would you like to see change, stay or improve?
It's a very broad question but it's a broad industry.
Personally, I'd like for there to be a legitimate accepted organization that will unite web shows and set a definitive answer to what makes a web series a web series.
I know the WGA, SAG etc have taken steps to bring web series creators, actors into the fold but there needs to be something else.
"Personally, I'd like for there to be a legitimate accepted organization that will unite web shows and set a definitive answer to what makes a web series a web series."
How would regulating allow the industry to grow beyond its current level of popularity? This is bad idea in my opinion. Personally, I believe the industry is doing just fine as is. The product sells itself. We just need more eyeballs and awareness.
Really? I feel there is so much out there being called a web series and it's not.
Think before the net, everything recorded wasn't referred to as Television. But that's what is being done with web content. Just because it's happens to be "visual" doesn't make it a web series.
I understand and agree. But I don't think a universal title is relevant. Some call it web series, some web shows, some original series, some vlogs, some video series. Honestly, to me its a matter of preference. Unlike TV (which the FCC controls), the Internet is free. We all should enjoy this freedom we're blessed with instead of trying to regulate it. Just my humble opinion. :)
I would just like to see productions that stand out in the web series field more. I do agree that there are some so so ones out there (Film and TV have them too) and know what you mean. But, I think that if we try to put a product that is over top, high quality, fun, and entertaining out there, it will stand out from the rest of the so so's. Thus, us as creators have the power to really help define what a web series is.
With that said though, I think that trying to regulate series is gonna be a huge undertaking being that it is the world wide web. Plus, so many types of shows of many different and varying lengths and types have done well. Even if someone picks a set format, you're still gonna have people doing their own thing that may be better than that and stand out more.
Of course this is all my humble opinion as well. Not gospel :)
Good questions. I agree with Rich that we don't want the industry to be "regulated" by any federal agency. At the same time I would like to see some things defined, such as how many episodes justifies a "series". This is just one example and I believe that in due process the industry will define itself.
By having these things defined it will help content creators who are assembling business models be able to communicate with sponsors. If more people are using the same language it will help present a more united front.
Indeed, if their are certain small unofficial standards then we have a base to work from or against rather than just doing web series as what appears to be forms of "artistic expression" rather than a show for the audience.
I'd like to see an informal standard of:episode time, what constitutes a season and such. Nothing needs to be the absolute rule, but something to shoot for as the basics or "in general" or something.
I would like it to be easier to find shows. It seems there is alot of content, but it is scatted so wide that most people are never aware of it. There needs to be something to streamline finding or organizing shows. Right now it is like going from local channels to satellite, you have 100 times more content but still nothing on. And even when something is on, you need some ads to reach you and a guide to look and what is on when. With web series it is hit or miss on finding and following a show.
Meant to respond to this a while back. A TV Guide-style web site for web series exists but ahead of its time. The problem is most web shows don't return a second season and most are abandoned mid-season for anyone to try and "organize" shows online successfully. Release dates are often unpredictable. The web series industry is still a 'make it up as you go and release when you can' industry that's why content is all over the place, thus making it near impossible for Internet users to discover and follow new and existing shows.
"The problem is most web shows don't return a second season and most are abandoned mid-season for anyone to try and "organize" shows online"
Not saying I think this is how it should be or anything; but perhaps a site could be made that showcases those series that did make more than one season or ran a full story arch etc. True most series aren't ready for that, but it's just an idea thrown on the table.
I had an interesting day yesterday. I was invited as one of about 30-35 people to represent the entire UK film industry interests to come and meet and discuss the film business with the Labour MPs tasked with coming up with their political party's film policy. Got to enter the Houses of Parliament (thats our equivalent to being invited to speak to the minority party in Congress) and take part and contribute to a debate.
One thing that came across is that although we all like to compartmentalise how we work, whether you are making film, making TV, making web series or whatever we are ALL part of the creative industries and perhaps we should be concentrating more on working together with other parts of the creative industries.
I think the problem which Rich has eloquently highlighted is that everyone acts or wants to be "the maverick". But being the maverick isn't going to help you grow your business.
Why is there even an argument about what can or cannot be called a web series? In the grand scheme of things, its pretty irrelevant. On IMDB your series is called a TV Series. Is that wrong? Actually i think its pretty accurate as I would define almost all the web series I have reviewed as television (a handful I might define as being Short films).
I imagine there are already professional associations for television. Plenty of them. Maybe thats where you need to focus efforts in legitimising what you do, if thats what you want. Be part of something bigger, because thats what audiences, sponsors and financiers will want to see.
In my opinion anyway.
"I think the problem which Rich has eloquently highlighted is that everyone acts or wants to be "the maverick". But being the maverick isn't going to help you grow your business."
Just had a partnership deal with a web series creator that could have potentially being a moneymaker fall through because this creator didn't wanna "let go" of his baby web series. This web series cradling mentality escapes me. You will not make money treating a web series as your child. You have to be willing to let it go especially if we're talking serious money. Pay rent and put food on the table first. You can always create another "hit" series. Goodness.
I've always wished there was some sort of guide or "webseries wiki" that did this job well. But, obviously, all these problems of not having a standard affect that.
Possibly the best indicator of whether a series should be considered a 'proper webseries' for lack of a better term, is the quality of the series itself.
But obviously, checking each series for its quality levels is A LOT of work.
Maybe it would be better if it was done as a wiki, so several dozen people could share the workload.