Partially unveiled by Le Figaro, the mediator Dominique D'Hinin's media chronology project is designed for the Canal group and is unlikely to change the situation on the American giants' side.
The insoluble question of the chronology of the media had to be tackled by the mediator of the Ministry of Culture Dominique D'Hinin. The latter is preparing to return his copy to the Minister on March 9. Le Figaro obtained the first arbitrations of this expected project.
The streaming house burns
Today, there is an imperative to reform: the chronology of the media is not suitable for anyone, except perhaps the operators. The consumer is not there, the piracy of works benefits, and SVoD platforms, whether led by US giants or smaller European structures, struggle to fit into the timeline decided in 2009. The problem, first known by consumers, arose during the last Cannes Film Festival: with Okja, Netflix put the industry before its contradictions.
OKJACe that each of the French actors hoped, at least in public, to know that Netflix and Amazon invest in the French creation, became there a motive of nightmare: the platforms would, considering the hexagonal regulation, invested in France while depriving the traditional circuit the fruit of this investment. In short, everyone would lose to the game. Therefore, it was necessary to look again at this inextricable question before the situation deteriorated again.
Faced with the obstinacy of each side, the government chose the voice of mediation while warning that he would not hesitate to legislate for lack of agreement. It was Mr. D'Hinin's mission. According to the revelations of Le Figaro, the latter remains quite close to the ideas already put forward by the Senate on the same issue, highlighting the concept so dear to Canal virtuous platforms.
This new legal framework should invite Americans to comply with the rules of French industry, otherwise risk inheriting an unfavorable chronology. Visibly thought by and for Canal, this rule must update the French cultural exception but especially give a ball to those who suffer from its expensive price.
Consumers could partially be winners if the government adopts the rules put forward by the mediator. The DVD and video on demand release could thus be advanced by one month against four today. A temporality quite close to the habits of the industry internationally. However, on the SVoD side – subscription video on demand – the mediator proposes a double chronology: one would be for virtuous platforms, the other would be for bad students.
And if the desire to invite all platforms to become virtuous is advanced, it seems surreal to see other actors that the Canal Group comply with the very demanding requirements of the mediator.
32% of the price of a Netflix subscription would be reserved for the creation
Indeed, Netflix, Amazon or even SFR, agree to comply with all French law in terms of content, pass a convention with the CSA, pay the CNC fee, enter into professional agreements in the manner of Canal and finally and especially ! – pay a monthly amount per subscriber of about € 3.50. This tax would be reserved for the creation and financing of the French cultural exception.
For Netflix, we are talking about 32% of the price of a subscription that would be reserved for creation. For Amazon, the monthly fixed-rate calculation is even more absurd: the platform that only charges a premium Generalist and rather annualized about fifty euros should pay € 42 per subscriber, per year. It appears that the project, as it stands, is designed to exclude de facto Americans from virtuous status. Channel meanwhile, ticks all the boxes.
In addition, Bolloré's group would see its streaming policy legitimized. While the company is gradually flowing its CanalPlay, it puts forward a home streaming service with blurred borders: MyCanal.
As part of an agreement with Sony, OCS benefits from all the movies of the studio six months after their release on its platform Go.Ce last, like OCS Go, fits into the flaws of the current legislation: some home contents are available 365 days a year – pure SVoD – while others enjoy smaller ranges between 30 and 100 days. This technique allows Orange and Canal to obtain in their catalog streaming movies six months after their release in theaters and not three years later as required by the current timeline for the SVoD.
MyCanal and OCS Go will be able to clarify their role as SVoD platform more clearly
The virtuous SVoD would get in the project the same six-month window applied to pay TV. MyCanal and OCS Go will be able to clarify their role as an SVoD platform more clearly, without losing any benefit on the broadcast. SFR is nevertheless a big loser of this new regulation: the location of Altice Studio in Luxembourg will put Patrick Drahi's channels in the free TV category and will undergo a 21-month chronology for all feature film broadcasts.
As for Netflix and Amazon, they risk stubbornly staying out of the box. The contribution required is particularly heavy, it is unlikely that the two giants will pay. Nevertheless, they will earn 9 months on the current timeline without paying additional fees. The blow will be harder to cash for the small French SVoD like e-cinema and FilmoTV which, even though their budget position is delicate, can not become virtuous.