It could be because it wants to really go after Netflix in the original content game. It could be because it just thinks that type of TV sucks. Either way, Amazon has reportedly decided to ditch some reality programming.
Bloomberg quotes the ubiquitous "people with knowledge on the matter" who say that Amazon is working to drop shows like Teen Mom and Mob Wives from its Prime Instant Video offerings.
Amazon currently has a deal with Viacom, whose networks air said reality shows. Amazon is apparently looking to keep a deal in place with Viacom to still offer many if its shows – just not some of the lagging reality titles. Apparently, Amazon just has reality show fatigue:
Viacom isn’t the only programmer grappling with shrinking audiences for reality TV. Amazon this year also declined to renew a deal with A+E Networks, which supplied “Pawn Stars” and “Storage Wars,” the people said. Some of the Viacom shows are still in production. The shrinking value of reality shows may have contributed to the $785 million charge Viacom took last quarter, said David Bank, an analyst with RBC Capital Markets.
Amazon looks to be taking notes from Netflix, who ditched Viacom in 2013. "Netflix at the time said that it had little desire to pay Viacom's fees for 'nonexclusive bulk content.' Netflix also said that it would be willing to pay for select titles, but not Viacom's entire library," says CNET.
Through Teen Mom does really, really suck, Amazon's move is pure business. If they don't have to pay Viacom for Teen Mom, it can spend the money it saves on more original programming to battle Netflix, HBO, and other big-name original series-producing entities. Not only that, but reality TV ain't what it used to be.
Image via Teen Mom, Facebook