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Serial Narrative Exports: US Television Drama in Europe

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Abstract

In the last decade media convergence and the development of online media have radically altered the operations of television industries on a global scale. A technology-led reconfiguration of television has provided new opportunities for media companies and consumers while also transforming traditional broadcasting logics. Alternative modes of content circulation have resulted in fast, instantaneous distribution that fosters a ‘culture of speed’ where immediate availability and control over media content have become part of digital consumer culture.1 In the United States, the industry has had to mediate between the availability of new technologies, which afford new opportunities to circulate content, and the demands of pre-existing industrial structures and logics.2 While digital convergence has challenged the old ways of producing and experiencing television, this mediation between new technological possibilities and traditional industrial logics has led to a degree of continuity and industrial stability, as exemplified by television multi-platforming. The ensemble of distribution, marketing, content design and other broadcasting practices adopted by producers and distributors to develop and circulate televisual products across multiple media, television multiplatforming takes advantages of new technologies to enhance new business models and services but centres on traditional broadcast content, such as hour long serial dramas.

Keywords

  • European Market
  • Distribution Practice
  • National Audience
  • Television Industry
  • Internet Protocol Television

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. John Tomlinson, The Culture of Speed. The Coming of Immediacy (London: Sage, 2007).

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  2. Amanda D. Lotz, The Television Will Be Revolutionized (New York: New York University Press, 2007).

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  3. See Elizabeth Evans, Transmedia Television: Audiences, New Media, and Daily Life (London: Routledge, 2011);

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  4. Jonathan Gray, Show Sold Separately: Promos, Spoilers, and Other Media Paratexts (New York: New York University Press, 2010);

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  5. Henry Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (New York: New York University Press, 2006). I use both ‘multiplatform’ and ‘transmedia’ without nuancing the differences and similarities of the two terms.

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  6. Henry Jenkins, ‘“We Had So Many Stories to Tell”: The Heroes Comics as Transmedia Storytelling’, Confessions of an Aca-Fan, 3 December 2007, http://henryjenkins.org/2007/12/we_had_so_many_stories_to_tell.html.

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  7. On the production of the Heroes comic books, see M J Clarke, Transmedia Television: New Trends in Network Serial Production (London: Bloomsbury, 2013).

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  8. Timothy Havens, Global Television Marketplace (London: BFI, 2006), 13.

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  9. John Caldwell, ‘Industrial Geography Lessons: Socio-Professional Rituals and the Borderlands of Production Culture’, in Mediaspace. Place, Space and Culture in Media Age, eds. Nick Couldy and Anna McCarthy (London: Routledge, 2004), 163.

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  10. Timothy Havens, ‘Rechanneling Culture in a Digital World’, paper presented at the Ends of Television Conference, Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis, 1 July 2009.

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  11. Denise D. Bielby and C. Lee Harrington, Global TV: Exporting Television and Culture in the World Market (New York and London: New York University Press, 2008), 173.

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  12. Goran Bolin, ‘Digitization, Multi-Platform Texts and Audience Reception’, in Popular Communication 8, no. 1 (2010), 72–83.

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© 2015 Alessandro Catania

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Catania, A. (2015). Serial Narrative Exports: US Television Drama in Europe. In: Pearson, R., Smith, A.N. (eds) Storytelling in the Media Convergence Age. Palgrave Macmillan, London. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137388155_12

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