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Will Netflix and Hulu Kill Cable?

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People are watching more online video than ever, so is it replacing a pay TV subscription for many people?

Cord-cutting might be a hot topic for the cable and satellite TV industries, but many doubt that it's even occurring. Here's what Tom Gorke, the senior vice president for content distribution and marketing at MTV Networks, had to say in a Streaming Media East panel:

"The data's that's out there...is pretty inconclusive one way or the other as to what's going on in terms of of cord-cutting. I think for us the important thing is that's it's certainly in the back of our minds. We're cognizant. We don't want to do anything, whether it's a distribution or an app or anything digitally, that's going to destroy value when it comes to our core business."

On the contrary, Gorke finds that putting premium content online can have a reverse effect and lead viewers back to the television:

"We do have data that shows that there is promotional value, that someone catching up on an episode that they missed, whether it's on our own platform or a third-party platform, does drive them back and continues to, sort of create that virtuous cycle to get them back to our shows," Gorke said.

A related hot topic was piracy. As Peter Kafka from All Things Digital jokingly said, “We don’t have anyone on the panel representing piracy.” But Gorke pointed out when high quality content was offered soon after it aired piracy went down.

Toward the end of the session, Marc DeBevoise with Starz was pushed to comment on the company's relationship with Netflix. He said, “It’s very, very tough to say if we will be on Netflix in a year.” 

Watch the whole panel discussion below:

Cutting The Cord On TV: Will Online Video Really Lead To Cable's Demise?

From Hulu to Netflix, streaming video is having a powerful impact on the traditional television industry. But are consumers really cutting the cord and bypassing cable operators in favor of online video? With the broadcast networks facing some of the same threats as the newspaper industry, will services like TV Everywhere and over-the-top (OTT) content be the industry's savior? These topics and more will be addressed by this panel of content heavyweights.

Moderator: Peter Kafka, Senior Editor, All Things Digital
Speaker: Tom Gorke, SVP, Content Distribution and Marketing, MTV Networks
Speaker: Jim Funk, VP, Business Development, Roku
Speaker: Bryan Perez, SVP, GM, NBA Digital
Speaker: Marc DeBevoise, SVP, Digital Media, Business Development & Strategy, Starz

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