Deep attention | What does the era of "web label" mean?

From filing to "web labeling", what does the era of "web labeling" mean for

online dramas

Interview with Yin Hong, Vice Chairman of China Film Association and Professor of Tsinghua University

  Xiaopu, the website of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection and the State Supervision Commission

  The "Dragon Logo" with the green bottom of the film title - the domestic film release license, means that the film has obtained the license to enter the market.

Recently, with the launch of the online drama "The Showdown" and the online movie "Leaves on the Golden Mountain", online audio-visual programs such as online dramas and online movies also have their own "webmarks" - online drama distribution licenses.

  Starting from June 1, the State Administration of Radio and Television officially issued administrative licenses to online dramas. When the domestic key online dramas, including online dramas, online micro-dramas, online movies, and online cartoons, are broadcast online, they will be used. Unified "web logo".

From the record registration system in the past to today's "licensed broadcasting", what does the era of "web label" mean?

In recent years, what are the characteristics of my country's online dramas?

How will online dramas adapt to changes in the external environment and achieve high-quality development in the future?

The reporter interviewed Yin Hong, vice-chairman of China Film Association, vice-chairman of China Literature and Art Critics Association, and professor of Tsinghua University.

Online drama hits directly affect producers' returns, and

differentiated pricing is still a trend

  Reporter: How should we define online dramas, and how is it different from traditional film and television dramas?

  Yin Hong: The so-called online dramas mainly refer to the first episodes of the online platform, including short dramas, medium dramas, and full-length dramas.

The well-known "Ai (Qiyi) You (Cool) Tencent (Xun)" as a broadcaster generally does not produce online dramas by itself. There are two situations: one is that these broadcast platforms directly purchase production companies that have completed The other is that the platform combines its own needs for genres, resources or schedules, and commissions customization through production companies, including most themed theaters such as iQiyi's "Mist Theater".

  The production company is mainly based on the judgment of the audience, the market and the communication with the network platform to complete the production of the drama.

There seems to be no restrictions on the creative process, as long as there is an industrial and commercial license and production capacity, but considering the issue of "export" of broadcasting, the producer still needs to prudently establish a project and carefully polish it.

In recent years, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television will require the filing of some key works and key plays, and the producers also have this willingness, which is equivalent to a layer of "insurance" to avoid huge losses due to failure to broadcast in the future.

  The difference between online dramas and traditional film and television dramas, head dramas are sometimes difficult to distinguish.

Because many top dramas will apply for TV broadcast licenses at the same time, and they will be broadcast simultaneously on TV stations and online.

For example, "Ordinary Glory" was premiered on Dragon TV, Zhejiang Satellite TV and Youku at that time, setting a good rating.

  The difference between the two is that TV stations have a series of media restrictions on the broadcast of episodes.

First, the broadcast time, such as prime time, generally cannot broadcast the dramas involved in the case; second, the broadcast subject matter, such as costume dramas, account for a relatively low proportion; third, the broadcast time, for example, usually requires no more than 40 episodes, too long episodes are very difficult Difficult to broadcast.

On the contrary, there are more suspense dramas, case-related dramas, overhead dramas, etc. on online platforms. Because some works are subject to the above-mentioned broadcast conditions and cannot be broadcast on TV stations, they will turn to online platforms.

  Reporter: For producers, broadcast on TV stations or online platforms, which one is more rewarding?

  Yin Hong: China is the world's No. 1 TV drama country—it is the No. 1 producer, the No. 1 broadcaster, and the No. 1 audience.

TV dramas are not only a battleground for Chinese TV, but also one of the creative contents pursued by the Internet and new media.

  The TV station mainly converts the ratings into the purchase price, so the requirements for the ratings are relatively high.

Since 2012, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television stipulated that "interruption of advertisements in TV dramas is not allowed", the advertisements of the entire TV series have been relatively reduced, so now TV stations' purchasing power in TV series has declined, and online platforms have shown a stronger purchasing advantage.

  The online platform basically adopts the method of splitting accounts. The number of clicks on the online drama directly affects the return benefit of the producer. It is very direct and can be cashed faster.

The online platform will also make a series of detailed requirements for the statistical caliber of clicks, such as how long continuous viewing counts as an effective click, such as the retention rate of users from the first episode to the last episode, and whether there is “abandoned drama” , whether there is double-speed playback, and so on.

These will become an important reference for the rating of online dramas. The higher the rating, the more promotion resources the platform will invest, and the higher the purchase price.

  Reporter: What do these online platforms rely on to support their operations, and where do the profits come from?

  Yin Hong: In the first quarter of this year, iQIYI achieved profitability in a single quarter for the first time. Although it has achieved certain results in controlling content costs, it is not enough to explain the problems of the whole year.

In fact, most of these online platforms are still at a loss.

They are basically listed companies, and at this stage they mainly rely on the future expectations of the industry from the capital market.

  The revenue of the network platform mainly comes from three parts, one is advertising, the other is marketing promotion, and the third is paid subscription.

These major platforms have almost 100 million subscribers, a considerable number.

In 2020, differentiated pricing began to emerge. Not only did the online platform gradually improve its user structure, but also advanced on-demand broadcasts appeared, causing controversy.

Although advance on-demand is short-lived, differentiated pricing is still a major trend.

The release of the "web label" means that the management of online film and television works will be more standardized and institutionalized

  Reporter: From the record registration system in the past to the current "licensed broadcasting", what does the era of "web labeling" mean?

  Yin Hong: Before the "web label", the registration system for online dramas was implemented.

Beginning in 2019, online movies and online dramas, like movies and TV series, have basically achieved unified online and offline review standards.

Before officially meeting with the audience, it needs to go through filing and publicity, and after obtaining the relevant filing number, it can be broadcast and promoted on the website of each audio-visual program and the homepage of the client.

In 2020, for the first time in the three award criteria of the Magnolia Award, the Feitian Award and the Golden Eagle Award, the TV dramas premiered by national key video websites will be included in the selection scope.

  The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television mentioned in the 2022 work arrangement on the rule of law for radio, television and online audio-visual, to further improve and improve the legal system of radio, television and online audio-visual, and proposed to adhere to the unified orientation, standard and scale of online and offline, and effectively promote radio and television and online audio-visual. Field laws and regulations are implemented.

In January this year, the review of online dramas was officially included in the management of administrative licensing matters.

  The release of the "web label" means that the management of online film and television works will be more standardized and institutionalized.

Relevant requirements have been enforced in recent years, but in the past it was a filing, but now a "seal" is stamped on the filing number.

  This direction is irreversible.

Putting on this "seal" is to add an identification mark to the online drama, which is of great benefit to the certification of intellectual property rights.

Because this is an administrative license, it has a certain legal effect, and it will be more rigid and powerful in safeguarding the interests of the film party.

Of course, this also requires the producers to pay more attention to the social development process, identify the creative direction, and keep the creative boundaries.

  Reporter: Why should you emphasize the strict management of online audio-visual content?

  Yin Hong: Relevant requirements have a long history.

Different from the traditional media from the state-owned system to the marketization, the Internet platform has been the product of the market economy since its birth.

  In the past, people didn't quite understand why TV stations couldn't do things that could be done on online platforms. The reasons were very simple: first, Internet companies were relatively weak at that time, and in order to promote their development, the management was relatively less stringent; At that time, the influence of the Internet was not that strong, and the social coverage was not that great.

As the Internet continues to grow and expand, its influence increases, and it has certain media attributes. At this time, the management will follow up and strengthen, and make corresponding requirements for it in accordance with the relevant national system and norms.

  This is also the norm.

This is the case with the market. First, it must be allowed to develop freely, but freedom does not have no boundaries and cannot be expanded indefinitely. When it develops, it needs to be constrained by norms to help it develop healthily.

What really broke the circle was precisely the episodes broadcast by "Taiwan and Internet Linkage"

  Reporter: We have noticed that some TV dramas are also popular on online platforms. Why?

  Yin Hong: The technological advantages of the Internet determine the convenience, speed and ease of selection of network platforms. This is incomparable to TV.

At the same time, TV stations also play an important role in promoting online platforms.

Most of the dramas with the best click-through rate on the online platform are also dramas with relatively good TV ratings, but very few pure online dramas can "break the circle".

For example, those online dramas adapted from big IPs, although they are very popular on the Internet, as long as they cross different age groups, there is no discussion.

  Popular TV broadcasts and movie theaters are good for the development of the platform, and it is a symbiosis.

Traditional media is often used as a window to create popularity at the moment, and most of the "long tail" behind it is acquired by online platforms.

  Due to the limited broadcast space and time, it is difficult for traditional media to create differentiated content, but this is not a problem for online platforms. Find suitable works.

  Reporter: According to your observations, what characteristics have the development of my country's online dramas presented in recent years?

  Yin Hong: The first feature is positive energy quantification.

Many creators consciously return to mainstream content, such as praising social progress and showing development achievements, even if it is historical themes of ancient costumes, they will also focus on excavating excellent traditional culture, which we call "positive value" or "mainstream value". .

It is characterized by "mainstream value + mainstream market". For example, a series of works such as "Awakening Age" and "Shan Hai Qing" broadcast by "Taiwan and Internet Linkage" have accumulated very good experience. It has aroused many young people's enthusiasm for Chinese classical poetry, and even brought a "national wind fever".

  The second feature is the increasing number of realistic works.

For example, although "Beginning" has great network features, it is also a work of pure reality theme, which is very popular.

Online movies are also keen to reflect realistic themes such as courier brother and poverty alleviation.

  The third feature is that the theme of ancient costumes is more refined.

Whether it's costumes, make-up props, or actors' gestures, they all add a lot to the costume drama.

Thanks to their cultural, visual presentation, and subject matter mystery, these works are also popular in international communication.

For example, "Sea Shepherd and Clouds" landed on the golden stage of the Italian National Radio and Television Corporation's film and television channel Rai 4, and it was very popular, causing netizens to "urge more".

  The fourth feature is that short and medium dramas have a good momentum of development.

For example, "The Beginning", "The Wind Rises in Longxi" and "The Hidden Corner" and "The Silent Truth" in "Mist Theater", these episodes are only more than ten or twenty episodes, but they are short, concise and gripping.

In order to win the audience in a shorter time, the production quality must be greatly improved.

  Reporter: In recent years, what emphasis have the competent authorities and industry organizations placed on the supervision and guidance of online drama production?

  Yin Hong: One is to control the "water injection drama".

In response to industry pain points such as online drama censorship, "water injection" and "astronomical remuneration", the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television requires production agencies to have basically completed script creation when they apply for the record; the length of the production should not exceed 40 episodes, and short episodes within 30 episodes are encouraged. Play creation; control cost allocation, the total remuneration of all actors shall not exceed 40% of the total production cost, and the remuneration of the main actors shall not exceed 70% of the total remuneration.

In the film review stage, the corresponding report and the film remuneration contract must be submitted for record.

  The second is to support "key dramas".

The Network Audio-Visual Program Management Department of the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television has set up a project library for major themes online film and television dramas, relying on the project library to do a good job in creating major reality, major revolution, and major historical themes, and strive to create major themes online audio-visual original masterpieces.

Topic selection requirements focus on planning major topics around major nodes, focusing on real life planning topics, and planning topics around advanced culture.

  The third is to eliminate "suspended drama".

In recent years, the creation of online dramas once appeared to be overly dependent on traffic, data and ratings. In the creation, emphasis was placed on actors, less on screenwriters, less on directors, less on productions, etc. The cultural content of the works was obviously insufficient, the phenomenon of sweet pets was serious, and some works were divorced. Real life, distorted history, and even touch the bottom line of morality.

To this end, the China TV Drama Production Industry Association issued an opinion, emphasizing the need to eliminate flashiness and impetuousness, emphasize the law of creation, increase the cultural content, and improve the quality of art.

  The fourth is to review "miniature dramas".

"Mini-series" refers to the works of online film and television dramas whose single episodes are less than 10 minutes in length.

The content review requirements must be of the same standard and scale as traditional online film and television dramas, and must be strictly controlled by the radio and television administrative department, broadcast platform, and production organization.

The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television's "Key Online Film and Television Drama Information Filing System" and "Internet Audio-Visual Program Information Filing System" have specially added a quick registration and filing module for online micro-short dramas.

Audiences and users are growing, requiring the industry to pursue artistic quality and develop towards quality

  Reporter: In terms of content production, what are the problems of online dramas that need to be improved?

  Yin Hong: Generally speaking, the subject matter is relatively narrow. For example, in the top 50 dramas of online dramas in 2020, urban youth, costume fantasy, suspense detective, sweet love and other genres are more popular.

Although there has been a trend of returning to realism to a certain extent, the total amount of real attention to the depths of social reality, including the presentation of important historical moments, is still relatively small, which makes some online drama works still have some depth and strength. lack.

  In addition, although the influence of "flow theory" in film and television creation has improved, it has not yet been eliminated.

It is embodied in actor selection, theme selection, and script selection. Traffic factors also have a certain impact. For example, choosing an IP may only be because it has accumulated a certain amount of users and traffic, but it is not suitable for adaptation or presentation.

In pursuit of short-term benefits, the best actors don't get the best roles, and the best works don't get the best adaptations.

These two problems are relatively more prominent.

  Reporter: How to further create high-quality products?

  Yin Hong: Film and television works are a combination of commerce and aesthetics, and the future will always shift from commerce to aesthetics.

You will find that even if big IP dramas use traffic stars and invest a huge amount of marketing power, if they are created in a very suspended way in the past, they will still not achieve the expected results. Instead, those more simple but aesthetically demanding works will get more and more audiences.

Audiences and users are growing, which also requires the industry to start pursuing the quality of art.

  Now the entire industry is striving to develop in the direction of high-quality products, which depends on too many conditions, such as the production environment and the creation environment.

To create a high-quality product, on the one hand, it is the creator's requirement for himself, to consciously go deep into life, into history, to respect the laws of art, and to respect the audience; There must be a bottom line, principles, and persistence, as well as tolerance, diversity, and prosperity.