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The FilmPulse Guys Respond

Remember that whole FilmPulse brouhaha from about a month ago? The guys who created it are back with a piece of video apologia (via Vic):

First of all, I’m not sure the video does the hosts any favors. It obviously eschews the glitzy production values of their actual show, but depicting them just casually shooting the breeze and reading off of hand-written notes while re-living the pilot episode doesn’t exactly instill a desire for me to take them seriously. That being said, they clearly heard the overwhelming criticism and wanted to respond in a productive fashion. That is more than I can say for many of the people in our industry (or many industries).

Mostly, though, I’m both confused and saddened by the video. First of all, why the abrupt ending? It comes out of nowhere and makes me think that I could have done a better job editing this video on my iPhone.

The guys talk about how expensive it was to create FilmPulse and how ComingSoon wanted to see if they could attract enough viewers to make it economically viable. Ultimately, despite all the controversy, they could not justify the cost of running the show.

I am a bit baffled that a) they thought this would be economically feasible in the first place, and b) that they (ComingSoon) are willing to give up after the first episode. With very few exceptions (Film Riot and its brethren come to mind), it is insanely difficult to create film-commentary media that is profitable. The only thing more insane than that is believing that you can do it after one episode. Unlike conventional weekly shows on television and the like, online shows are often additive in their attraction for new viewers because they require buy-in from listeners in the form of downloading/subscribing. In other words, shows generally become more popular over time, and constantly add to their viewership.

In the end, these guys are right: shows like FilmPulse, derided as they were, are usually labors of love. And when the whole internet takes a huge steaming dump on your labor of love, it can be reasonably taken as an indication to hang up your spurs, regardless of the economics.