NBC Acquires Internet Show Quarterfile
Posted on November 17, 2007The New York Times reports that NBC has gone ahead and purchased the Internet show Quarterlife. Numerous TV shows have schedule changes or are running out of episodes because of the ongoing writers' strike. The rapidly diminishing number of quality shows has the networks looking for other options such as game shows and reality tv. NBC managed to find in Quarterlife an online show that had enough quality to be broadcast on television. The Times says NBC buying Quarterlife to air on the network is a "first-of-its-kind deal" for a web-based show.
Some of the tech blogs have been buzzing that the writers' strike will benefit web publishers somehow either as a boon to original web video content or by sending advertisers toward the Internet. Advertisers are already pretty keen on trying out the Internet so the writers' strike isn't really going to motivate them anymore than they already are. As far as web fiction goes Quarterlife is really the exception to the rule. Most web fiction is either too short or the production values are not good enough for it to make the jump to television. There probably isn't enough time to get an original high quality web series off the ground quickly enough before the writers' strike is over -- especially with the top 12,000 script writers on strike. The web might compete a little better in the humor category than in fiction but even then you are still lacking the top comedy writers and the tv studios.
The first episode of Quarterlife can be seen below. Other episodes can be found on the show's website. Quarterlife can also be seen on MySpaceTV where it should not be confused with an online reality series called Roommates.