Broadcast Beat Magazine 2017 IBC Show - Page 61

DON’T GET LEFT OUT DURING WINTER — THE IMPORTANCE OF QUALITY OF EXPERIENCE By RICHARD BRANDON, CMO, EDGEWARE Game of Thrones (GOT) and The Handmaid’s Tale have been keeping audiences on the edge of their seats – and not just because of the fight for the Iron Throne or the battle to escape Gilead. When GOT aired its season seven premiere, both HBO Go in the US and Foxtel in Australia crashed. Those who lost the fight with their OTT services did what disgruntled viewers do best in 2017 – shared their frustrations on Twitter. Not long before Game of Thrones trended up a twitter storm, The Handmaid’s Tale was the center of attention when the violent dystopian drama was constantly inter- rupted on all networks through- out the globe with ironic and untimely adverts ranging from IUDs to pregnancy tests – all in a show about women being property of the state and forced into surrogacy. Viewers watch- ing Australia’s SBS IP-delivered service also complained of ads popping up mid-sentence, with no appropriate segue. If the content distributors of these shows can’t guarantee a high quality of experience (QOE) for programs with as much popularity, anticipa- tion and intense drama as The Handmaid’s Tale or Game of Thrones, it begs the question – is today’s TV killing itself? At what point to do these content distribution crashes and annoy- ing adverts start driving people towards piracy? CONGESTION ON THE ROADS TO WESTEROS In the fight against content theft, it was Game of Thrones’ own popularity that helped contribute to its own downfall. The season seven pre- miere alone was viewed more than 16 million times t h r o u g h legal chan- nels – six mil- lion of which were deliv- ered over the internet. Distribution networks’ s e r v e r s weren’t able to sustain this demand however, with many crashing across the globe – including in the US and Australia. On top of these 16 million legal views, the episode was also report- ed by piracy analyst company MUSO to have been viewed Broadcast Beat Magazine • • 61