In a thought-provoking panel discussion hosted by the Royal Television Society, industry experts provided valuable insights into the future of television in 2024. The overarching theme that emerged from the discourse is the impending financial constraints, leading to a ripple effect in the television industry, including a shrinking workforce.
One prominent prediction highlighted during the discussion is the tightening of budgets for content creation. With less money to spend, the industry is expected to witness a surge in lower-budget shows becoming the new norm. High-end television, traditionally reliant on substantial financing, will face increasing challenges in securing funds over this year.
The panellists emphasised the dominance of Big Tech, foreseeing its continued stranglehold on the industry and its pivotal role in shaping how audiences consume media. Evan Shapiro underscored a notable distinction between the US and UK media industries, asserting that the American media landscape is in a more precarious state than its British counterpart.
A seismic shift in the sports broadcasting landscape was also explored, with the emergence of streaming platforms as the new home for sports content. The recent Netflix-WWE deal was highlighted as a potential nail in the coffin for traditional broadcasters. As sports content migrates to streaming services, it poses a significant challenge to conventional networks, forcing them to adapt or risk becoming obsolete.
The advertising industry, vital to the financial health of the television ecosystem, is expected to undergo a dramatic transformation in 2024. Panelists expressed optimism about a substantial improvement in the advertising sector over the year, heralding positive economic signals.
Despite the challenges, the panellists identified live event TV as a beacon of hope for attracting viewers in 2024. With major events such as the US and UK elections and the Olympics on the horizon, the television landscape is poised for an influx of compelling content. These events present opportunities for broadcasters to engage audiences through real-time, must-watch programming.
In conclusion, the television industry in 2024 is navigating a complex terrain marked by financial constraints, technological dominance, and shifting viewer preferences. While high-end television may face funding hurdles, the rise of streaming platforms and the allure of live event TV offer avenues for adaptation and innovation. As the industry evolves, content creators and broadcasters must remain agile to thrive in this dynamic landscape.