Do the SVODs have enough incentive to buy shows from Australian producers?
Communications Minister urges streaming platforms to look to more local content.
Communications Minister Paul Fletcher has written a piece for The Australian on the government’s Green Paper on Media Reform and the lack of Australian content quotas for Subscription platforms.
While Stan has been making good progress with Australian content, and some advances from Amazon Prime, Netflix and even Acorn TV, Disney+ is yet to announce any new scripted local content.
This is in contrast to subscription numbers of Netflix (6 million subscriptions), Amazon Prime Video 2.9 million, Disney+ 2.6 million and Stan 2.4 million.
It’s difficult to know if the government will legislate a minimum quota for the sector soon.
“If we think it is important that at least some of what Australian audiences see on Seven or Nine or Ten or Foxtel is Australian content, why is it not equally important that they can see Australian content on SVOD services?” Fletcher asks.
“And it raises questions about the Australian screen production industry. Its traditional market, free-to-air television, is flat or declining, but the SVOD sector is booming. Do the SVODs have enough incentive to buy shows from Australian producers?
“The Green Paper proposed a formal Australian content spend requirement on the global SVODs. Right now we are examining the responses to this proposal received through our consultation process.
“We do not want to overburden a young, fast-growing sector. But the latest numbers on the SVODs’ audience numbers and expenditure suggest that is not a high risk.”