Online Movie Rental/Streaming Service + Pay Per View

Discussion in 'Making Money Online' started by emar, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. emar

    emar
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    Hi,

    Hoping i can get some info ad advice before deciding if this is something i should go further with, or forget about.

    Id like to share an idea, a few years back i developed a simple, secure application for distributing and streaming media online.
    If my online business needed to deliver media in such a way, i'd be comfortable using this setup, which could be developed further.
    Haven't seen another like it, not the kind of system that will sit on a website where users can browse through pages, it's more visual.
    Nothing fancy, custom design and layout for end user, user-friendly features for browsing, renting and sharing/streaming video or audio.
    No downloads required to view the media, plugin is built in, media screens provided, share and watch in real time with their friends online.

    Where to start, well i have done a bit of research into some online communities where audio and video rentals are very popular.
    If an unlicensed provider can make over 2/3 thousand $/€ per month from pirate media, communities where this may be tolerated,
    If they can make that kind of money without being able to properly advertise their services, what happens if a company sets up
    legally and offers the same service to every community, with the freedom to advertise to over 100 thousand users every day.
    The kinds of things the go through my mind every day..

    That really has me thinking, Is this a niche? not really, as it's been done already,
    Is it an opportunity to corner this new market, i believe it has potential as these communities grow fast..
    Maybe not of interest to everyone, but for me, if it's possible, as long as bills are paid and we can turn a decent profit.. it's an income.

    Don't know about licensing, i read a story about netflix in 2011 paying out over 7 mil in licensing fees, hardly the case for a small start-up business?
    That scares me into thinking if this is too far fetched and impossible to finance, i'll never know unless i try.

    Not trying to be the next blockbusters, just see an opportunity to provide media in a different why, not tied to one location.

    Would like to know if it's feasible.


    Any advice appreciated.

    Thanks
     
    • Like Like x 1
    #1 emar, Feb 13, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  2. emar

    emar
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    Nobody with any advice or info?
     
  3. Fergal

    Fergal
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    Welcome to Business Advice Forum emar and sorry that your post was missed first time round.

    Would it be true to say that the only real potential cost of significance, to set up the business would be the licence fee?

    It sounds to me that the potential licence fee is the first thing you need to clarify, if you are to get certainty as to whether or not you can proceed with the business. I'm not familiar with that industry myself unfortunately. Have you contacted any of the content providers to ask them about the licence fee options?

    Would selling on the technology to existing content distributors or the types of communities you mention, be an option for your business?
     
  4. emar

    emar
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    Hi thanks for the welcome,

    Yes i think the first thing i need to find out is what kind of license, who to contact and costs of content.
    If i'm right, i also need to purchase physical copies of every cd/movie title that will be rented and streamed.
    We won't be selling the actual dvds or cds themselves, just converting them to file formats and streaming those.

    No i wasn't thinking of selling on the technology itself, anyone could reproduce similar, but our rental system is unique in the way we designed it.
    I honestly don't think there is another system like it, i'm not too concerned about someone coping it, they can try, but the main thing that interests
    me is we have something that works, and people already rent movies online, if someone wants to copy this, they will need a license to use it.
    It's perfect for the audience i'm interested in, simple to use, secure, user never gets real movie urls, auto starts movies, expires after rental time.
    I think the whole idea of being able to share a movie with a friend or loved one over the net is one of the most appealing aspects of this project.
    Providing a simple rental service, that they can watch online with others and feel like they are in the same room, chat area, movie screen etc.

    There are many rental services, some claiming to be licensed, but the funny thing about this, none of them will advertise outside these communities.
    That kind of puts 2 and 2 together for me. 80k+ users per day is a lot of people to advertise to, i couldn't target those numbers on the high street.
    I have to be positive about this, i have doubts but no need to, i can see how this will work and how it's going to be managed and updated.

    I don't have any financial sources yet, just working with an idea I've had for a few years that had a lot of interest when tested.
    Someone suggested why don't we do it as pirates to fund licensing costs, well that would be stupid to build a business then get shut down.
    I feel if this is done right it would be a profitable business, that's where the money is these days; streaming media, rather than dvd stores.
    Just to start small and work with peace of mind, providing a cheap service that will bring people back every week for new releases, that's my goal.

    I haven't contacted anyone about licensing costs, not sure who to contact yet.

    Thanks

    Emar
     
    • Like Like x 1
    #4 emar, Mar 13, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2013
  5. Fergal

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    Thanks for the update Emar, I wish you every success with it. Hopefully some of our other members will also offer you helpful suggestions in this thread, over the coming days.
     
  6. TimeRider

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    emar: is that your own code? If it is your own code, Do you think you need to license it? where do you license it? My brother also developed a program years ago, he had no problem with licensing it. There was nothing like that. I think when you develop something on your own then you have your own right unless it's piracy or copied.
     
  7. Ted

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    I would like to offer some ideas, but to be honest, I don't fully understand what you are trying to do with your software.

    As I understand what you have written here, you basically invented a piece of software that would allow a website to offer movie rentals to the general public.

    If that is the case, then what practical applications are there for your software? What types of websites would use it and how would they use it?
     
  8. emar

    emar
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    Hi all,

    Thanks Fergal,

    I rewrote most of the code myself, it's not a highly sophisticated application, the scripts are not in use for anything similar that u know of, 99% sure.
    Don't think you can license an application using someone else's code to build it, without permission, guy that helped me build is long gone, it's my design.
    So i can use for anything, no plans to release it to other users, unless i offered a reseller plan based on % split, which is instant payment if enabled.
    Not planning to use a websites other than an web presence about the service, don't want to say much about that yet, but it doesn't need a website to run.
    At the end of the day, user would rent a movie online and be able to watch it on web-based player/screen provided by me or any other provider.
    The only parts that will be on the web are the database and files that are played/streamed, stored outside the www directory for extra security.

    So if i have a working system, all i need is the right license and a movie distributor right? obviously let the tax office know, and finding funds :)
    Could start off with a dedicated server but might be better to go with a cloud package as they are easier expandable later if we run out of space.

    I'm not trying to make this sound better than it is, it's just an idea, i feel excited about enough that i think has potential to make a decent income.
    I have some doubts, saying that, i have seen it in test mode, better to do this right or not at all, not doing it to fail, i need to make a living too.

    It works the same as any website in the sense that you rent online, get a digital movie to view over the net, digital distribution right?
    Don't know if i should contact movie studios as they will want full details about the whole project, but i have to get licensed somewhere.

    If i can even afford to o this, find financial support etc.
     
    #8 emar, Mar 14, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2013
  9. emar

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    How are all these movie rental/streaming websites getting their licenses?

    That's really all i wanted to know, the rest i already have built myself.
     
  10. Fergal

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    You could visit their websites and do some research to find out who issues their licences. If you can't find the info on their website, phone them and ask. Next contact the licensing authorities and ask about the procedures for getting a licence for your own business. Do you feel that approach would get you the information you require?
     
  11. emar

    emar
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    I don't think companies would be willing to share how they got their license for me to offer the same or similar service online.
    I mean even digital tv providers like upc, sky etc. these days it's all streamed from servers right? that's basically what i'd be doing.
    However i did contact two movie companies by email, maybe not the best approach, i shared my ideas but no reply to those emails.
    I know they won't welcome me aboard and offer me free access to their database of movies, i don't expect that either.
    But someone said to me there's no point unless you're a company with a lot of finances, someone else said that's not true
    because netflix started out as one guy with an idea, my idea is more interactive than netflix in a sense it's a 3d platform.
    I'm gonna really be annoyed with myself if someone does pull this off.
     
  12. rasthook

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    response to licensing information

    Emar,
    Our company specializes in video advertising and monetization, and content licensing is part of our offering. We would need to better understand and see what your application can do and how to best utilize it in the marketplace. We can discuss collaboration but if you are only looking to license content to stream yourself then you will find it impossible without a serious upfront budget. Content typically come in A, B and C List class and without upfront fees you will be limited to C-list content for the most part though still require some sort of a financial commitment. Additionally, content licensing is not possible for new, unestablished entities for the most part and rightfully so for many good reason. If your application that you have developed is unique in some way and can be integrated into an established company offering then you are able to enter the business side and benefit from it. However, even this is not that easy considering there are way too many application developer who have put together many solutions most of which don't see the day light.

    There are of course many other issues to consider beyond the licensing of content including streaming format, delivery to multiple devices, security and distribution, quality and speed, cloud support, geographic considerations, bandwidth and much more. All of which cost lots of money and time to setup and maintain. Hence the need for established entities making it a reality versus others thinking about starting such a business. I know it is not what you want to hear and probably know most of this but it is the reality of this market.

    In any case, I would need to know more information about what it is you have developed and why you think it is more unique than what is in the marketplace today. It is concerning that the person who developed this for you is not longer part of the offering. Unless you are tech-savvy and know the system in-depth then you will meet some additional obstacles there too. Drop a response and let me know if you wish to explore possibilities beyond licensing content reserved for mega corporations. If you check every studio website you will notice they do not make it easy to obtain the information and if someone does call you back on an inquiry they will inform you of many requirements some of which I have covered in this post and the need for upfront licensing fees that are very costly at best.

    Keep up the positive drive and good luck with your endeavor.

    Best regards.

     
  13. platnumcn

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    Hi Emar

    Possible to tell us, How far have you gone through with this move of yours? Are you still looking for funds or has there been any movement in the situation?
     
  14. emar

    emar
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    Hi,I haven't taken the project any further than developing a simple, secure, working system that delivers content after rental.If i have to approach movie studios then i'm not sure how i could convince any of them this is something worth getting involved in,Other than the fact that thousands of people watch movies online, in social communities, online games especially, where most of the providers are pirate,meaning they can't advertise outside these communities or even in them (forums, blogs etc.) on the other hand, my business would be licensed and free to advertise our services anywhere.With regular online rental stores you can watch a movie on their website, the difference with mine is that a user or users could browser, rent and watch movies in a virtual environment of their choice.I think that is kind of unique in itself, being able to share a good movie with a friend or loved one like you would in real life, yet you could be thousands of miles apart :)It's just an idea for an online dvd rental store, i'm particularly interested in online game worlds because there's so many new members logging in every few seconds, my ads could be all over them.Most of these games that are worth investigating have their own currencies, point systems, tokens or whatever you want to call them, these are used to trade, which can be sold for real cash.
     
  15. DogwoodGroupInc

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    Competition will be stiff.
     
  16. platnumcn

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    I think that the first thing, which you can do, is to look for, if there is, any licensing unit for such sites. I have not heard of such thing, but I believe that movie distributors might have their share, if you are looking to install original DVD print stuffs in your site. I believe there has to be a payment, big time payment, if you are to make such a site legal. By legal, I mean something, which is not treated as a domain providing pirated stuffs.

    What do you think guys?
     
  17. emar

    emar
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    I don't understand how you could make that assumption, especially in the communities i'm talking about,
    There are no legal dvd rental businesses, only pirates, one legal business would probably clean out every pirate business.
    Freedom to advertise unlike the competition, i think it's a win win situation for one proper company all the way into the future.

    If i could find one smaller company online that would give me access to their movie database this could really work well for all.
     

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