Neil Stiles, President of Variety on building content strategies in a multi-screen world

Neil Stiles, president of the leading showbiz news outlet the Variety Group spoke on a panel at MEF Americas 2011 in Miami last week, where he and other industry luminaries from the likes of Shazam, Turner Broadcasting, Samsung and MTV discussed content strategy in a multi screen world. Ben Smith of mobile tech blog Wireless Worker interviewed Neil shortly afterwards to further explore his thoughts on content and how to succeed in a multi screened, converging landscape.

While dismissive of the wisdom in charging extra for content by simply delivering it to mobile devices, he is excited about the possibilities for mobile in supporting the facilitation of additional revenue streams for content, citing the purchase of onscreen items in TV shows as an example;

“Originally the thought process was all around ‘the screen’…now the business model has moved from the screen to a second device, so if you’re watching a show with an i-Phone, the i-Phone or the tablet becomes the transactional device – I think that’s the third revenue stream for television.”

While he concedes that form is important, and a degree of tailoring is useful in ensuring a smooth user experience, Neil argues that the whole first/second screen debate is something of a red herring and that the technology being deployed is largely irrelevant when the focus should be on providing quality content, and providing it wholeheartedly wherever you choose to do so.

The internet is the ultimate in unregulated markets, & it’s the ultimate in zero/marginal cost of distribution… now is the time to be decisive and have confidence… if you produce high quality content, you have to believe someone will be prepared to pay for it”.

Click below to listen to the frank interview in full on the 361 Degrees podcast.

Direct MP3 download – 8MB – Subscribe by iTunes, Zune or RSS

Via Wireless Worker



  1. Marjorie DeHey, GM MEF says:

    This is brilliant! Neil is a true industry expert.

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