The year 2018 has been marked by the unstoppable rise of new models of audiovisual consumption on demand and the corresponding start-up of new strategies by traditional television operators. The latest data from the Household Panel of the National Commission of Markets and Competition (CNMC), corresponding to the third quarter of the year, indicate that one out of every three Spanish households with an Internet connection already consumes audiovisual content through payment platforms. , with Movistar + and Netflix consolidating its leadership. In parallel, traditional television shows a gradual erosion: according to data from the consultancy Barlovento Comunicación, last November (with 242 minutes per viewer) was the lowest television consumption of the last ten years. In this situation, everyone seems to have sought to consolidate the most natural alliances. Netflix reached Movistar + in December, almost at the same time that Mediaset, Atresmedia and RTVE launched its LOVEStv platform, currently restricted to TVs compatible with a limited implementation technology (HbbTV).
In 2018, the policy on television reached a critical temperature with the motion of censure against Mariano Rajoy, who gave great information to La Sexta programs as Red Hot Y The intermediate, to the detriment of a TVE that has ceased to be an information reference for this type of events. The change of government accelerated the relay in the presidency of the RTVE Corporation, shaken by accusations of manipulation that reached the European Parliament. After a controversial process, the respected journalist Rosa María Mateo was appointed sole administrator of RTVE. His first measures focused on the renovation of the top of the news services, and on the recovery for its broadcast of the second season of the series April 14th. The Republic, unpublished since the arrival of the Popular Party to power. But this year, on account of the Valley of the Fallen and the beginning of the new electoral cycle, it will also be remembered for the usual presence of spokespersons of the far right in the news and debates.
In the non-news content section, Spanish fiction crossed borders like never before, with the International Emmy of The paper house (produced by Antena 3, but popular around the world thanks to Netflix) as a high point. The paper house already has a third season running exclusively on Netflix, that with the youth drama Elite has achieved another global success. The expansion in the creation of fictions seems to anticipate a "bubble" of Spanish series: only in 2018 Movistar + has premiered nine seasons, while Netflix, which plans to open its first production center in Europe in Madrid, does not want to waste the way in which The paper house has opened international doors for a fiction of affordable cost and good production values. For example, the Atresmedia group has launched Atresmedia Studios to create content for other operators, starting with the romantic comedy Small coincidences for Amazon Y The pier for Movistar +. This expansion seems to be based mainly on international sales and payment platforms, with disturbing audience data in traditional channels (something suffered even by the series of the year, Fariña). Anticipating the important consequences for advertising revenues, Antena 3 has been a pioneer in announcing the cut of the duration of the chapters to 50 minutes.
In the entertainment genre, Operation Triunfo 2017 prolonged its success (especially among younger audiences) until the performance of Amaia Romero and Alfred García at the Eurovision Song Contest, with a result as mediocre in the competition as successful in the audimeters (more than eight million viewers in the voting phase). The attempt to repeat the formula with a new edition has resulted in worse data and considerable controversy. The phenomenon of the year has been, however, Big Brother VIP. Authentic killer formed by its ability to spread throughout Telecinco's programming through galas, endless debates and even melodramatic phone calls like those starring Isabel Pantoja, Big Brother VIP has shown that entertainment is going to be the engine of traditional television consumption
Concepción Cascajosa is a professor of Audiovisual Communication at the Carlos III University of Madrid.