Why legacy media is so very, very screwed in four succinct points:
Reports circulated a report last week that “Black-ish” creator Kenya Barris is looking for the exit door on his contract with ABC and might be considering signing a deal with Netflix, following the lead of Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy as well as a number of others.
This comes just about a month after an episode of “Black-ish” was removed from the schedule because of “creative differences,” with sources saying the story touched on a number of racial and societal issues. The show has never been afraid of making such statements, but apparently, this was a bit more than the network was comfortable with.
ABC’s parent company Disney is currently working to obtain approval for a merger with Fox. One of the primary rationales offered for that merger is that legacy media companies need to consolidate in order to obtain the strength and power necessary to fight off the intrusion of upstarts like Netflix.
Talent is being wooed by Netflix, which promises a more open and creative environment free of studio notes and other forms of interference. The shows and movies produced may not always be a hit, but at least the creators have been able to tell the stories they want to.
So, to recap:
ABC: “We’re worried talent is going to Netflix and further consolidation of media ownership is the only solution.”
Literally everyone: “Maybe just don’t stifle the creative voices of the talent you’ve hired, especially black, female and other non-white male creators?”
ABC: “Nope. Meanwhile, here’s Roseanne actively dismissing the shows from black, female and other non-white male creators.”
Literally, everyone: (smh) “What’s on Netflix?”
Chris Thilk is a freelance writer and content strategist who lives in the Chicago suburbs.