Why was it so hard to establish a "4th" kids network

Red Arrow

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Out of the ones listed in the OP, only Fox Family realistically had a shot. Everything else was in another tier of cable. They were never going to close that distribution gap. Disney XD couldn't and that's despite the weight of (then exclusive) Marvel and Star Wars programming.

There are a lot of reasons The Hub failed. It replaced a dying channel and inherited its distribution woes. It launched while the U.S. economy was still struggling. There were no international affiliates to help spread production costs around.* Ultimately, I view its failure as being on the hands of Discovery. Hasbro tried, but as mentioned, giving them operational control negatively impacted ad sales due to fears of funding the competition. They weren't the company with decades of history running TV channels either. On the flip side, the zombified state that Discovery Family is in suggests they just aren't cut out for this segment.

*Mind you, this was probably a positive for Hasbro Studios as it meant they were free to sell these shows to anyone internationally. Mainly channels that were far more established in their markets than a newly launched Hub affiliate would be.
I find it odd how Discovery Kids didn't change to The Hub in Latin America. Even more odd is how Discovery Kids (not The Hub) launched in India and Southeast Asia in 2012. These channels even aired Hasbro cartoons...

Discovery Kids now also exists in Australia, and Discovery Family in the Middle East and France. (but the French version doesn't have any children shows)
 

TZ750

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But as kids consume more media online, it’s all a moot point.

However, the argument of "kids are consuming more media online" is false as the only thing kids do online is either talking/watching videos of their friends and family on facebook, twitter and youtube.
 

Red Arrow

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However, the argument of "kids are consuming more media online" is false as the only thing kids do online is either talking/watching videos of their friends and family on facebook, twitter and youtube.
Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are all media. More time consumed on YouTube = less time can be consumed watching TV / Netflix.
 

Tacomaster

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I think it's a mixture between the other 3 getting a head start, them having specific purposes(at least initially) that made them stand out, and overall declining ratings for TV in general.
 

RandomMe

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Out of the ones listed in the OP, only Fox Family realistically had a shot. Everything else was in another tier of cable. They were never going to close that distribution gap. Disney XD couldn't and that's despite the weight of (then exclusive) Marvel and Star Wars programming.

There are a lot of reasons The Hub failed. It replaced a dying channel and inherited its distribution woes. It launched while the U.S. economy was still struggling. There were no international affiliates to help spread production costs around.* Ultimately, I view its failure as being on the hands of Discovery. Hasbro tried, but as mentioned, giving them operational control negatively impacted ad sales due to fears of funding the competition. They weren't the company with decades of history running TV channels either. On the flip side, the zombified state that Discovery Family is in suggests they just aren't cut out for this segment.

*Mind you, this was probably a positive for Hasbro Studios as it meant they were free to sell these shows to anyone internationally. Mainly channels that were far more established in their markets than a newly launched Hub affiliate would be.
Canal Panda and Biggs were more or less our Hub back in 2011, they did air some of the Hub series, MLP came in the following year. Dan Vs. never aired here.
 

Tacomaster

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Canal Panda and Biggs were more or less our Hub back in 2011, they did air some of the Hub series, MLP came in the following year. Dan Vs. never aired here.
They are launching some Discovery Family channels worldwide, but with the "adult" programs. The Discovery channel space isn't as crowded in international markets.
 

TZ750

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Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are all media. More time consumed on YouTube = less time can be consumed watching TV / Netflix.
Except that the only videos that kids watch on youtube are videos of their friends and family and the only thing kids do on facebook and twitter is talk to their friends and family.
 

Tacomaster

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Except that the only videos that kids watch on youtube are videos of their friends and family and the only thing kids do on facebook and twitter is talk to their friends and family.
Not true. If anything, they’re watching those creepy videos of Elsa and SpiderMan. Your competition, folks
 

Darkdawn

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However, the argument of "kids are consuming more media online" is false as the only thing kids do online is either talking/watching videos of their friends and family on facebook, twitter and youtube.

Aren't you forgetting a little thing called Fortnite? There are recent studies indicating that it has actually become a major social platform for today's tweens and teenagers. It's more or less becoming the real-life equivalent of the virtual reality program depicted in Ready Player One without actually being VR... at least not yet.

But getting back on-topic: I'm pretty sure that there will never be a 4th major kids network for the sole reason that network/cable television is becoming a thing of the past. As far as cartoons/family-friendly entertainment in general, there currently is a 4th major competitor to Disney, Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network, it's called Netflix.
 

TZ750

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Well THAT couldn’t be more wrong.

They’re watching Youtubers: vloggers, (especially) gamers, unboxers, and reaction videos, among other things.


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Except those vloggers, gamers, unboxers and reaction videos are mostly of their friends or family members.
 

TZ750

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Not true. If anything, they’re watching those creepy videos of Elsa and SpiderMan. Your competition, folks
Nope, those Elsa and Spiderman video views are largely the result of Youtube's fawed algorithm as well as bots (in reality hardly anyone watches those Elsa and Spiderman videos (or similar videos).
 

TZ750

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Aren't you forgetting a little thing called Fortnite? There are recent studies indicating that it has actually become a major social platform for today's tweens and teenagers. It's more or less becoming the real-life equivalent of the virtual reality program depicted in Ready Player One without actually being VR... at least not yet.

But getting back on-topic: I'm pretty sure that there will never be a 4th major kids network for the sole reason that network/cable television is becoming a thing of the past. As far as cartoons/family-friendly entertainment in general, there currently is a 4th major competitor to Disney, Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network, it's called Netflix.
Sorry but those studies are vague and unreliable and more like hype than actual analysis. As far as Netflix is concerned its a standalone entity onto itself, all of the "competition" is just smoke and mirrors , its clearly that the other three networks (Disney, Nick and Cartoon Network) don't even want to compete and just operating in their own bubble and two of them (Nick and Cartoon Network) are suffering from poor management.
 

JMTV Studios

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I feel that if the Hub has been in basic cable alongside its competitors it might’ve had a better chance, but the issue of obtaining ad revenue, and the fact that Hasbro cared more about toy sales than ratings means that even then it still wouldn’t tha be worked.
Yup, I agree. If The Hub Network would've lasted much longer if it was on basic cable instead of high tier digital cable, then I think it could worked. But no, it didn't happened. It also didn't help that Mattel and Lego backed away from The Hub as much as possible because they thought it'll cause more harm to their business than good.

As for this topic at hand? I think the problem of launching a fourth kids network is that these companies are trying so hard to get into the kids market and trying to be like the big three kids networks but they completely don't understand on what made them so great.

You can say whatever you want about Nick, CN, and Disney and you can say whatever opinion you want about their shows, but at least you can acknowledged that they changed. They evolved. They're not the same networks decades upon decades prior. Sure, they kept the core aspect on what made them so special in the first place, but as demographics changes, and kids taste's changed, they had to keep on changing in order to stay afloat for many years. Something that Fox Family, Discovery Hub, and Universal Kids tried and failed to do.

Let me put it this way, If the big three kids networks kept airing the same shows and movies when they first launched on TV back in the day for many many years to come, they're done. End of story.

But I'll say this. Unlike, the other two, at least with The Hub tried to do something different and at least they tried to evolved, but they completely falls apart many years later due a lot of people focusing on Netflix now than anything.

I think Benzie Johnson Jr made very good point on why it's hard to launch a new channel in the USA on his Discovery Family video. (Timestamp: 7:07-7:25)


I think that statement on what he said still rings true on what the topic question that we are in right now.

Since we are living the streaming age, a lot of people consuming their content on streaming services than on cable TV. Sure, they had good shows on cable TV right now, but streaming services are the most popular and more profitable right now during these struggling times.

Will they be a fourth competitor in the kids TV industry in the future? Absolutely not. Cable TV lost it's popularity in recent years, so doing a fourth kids network in this day and age is a waste of time and money, to be honest.

Streaming services, on the other hand? I can defiantly see the possibility. The big three kids networks has their own streaming services in recent times like Nick with CBS All Access/Paramount Plus, Disney with Disney Plus, Hulu, and ESPN Plus, and CN with HBO Max and the Boomerang app. Granted, the fourth competitors kinda had that already like Universal Kids with Peacock, Fox with their owns shows and movies on Disney Plus and Hulu, and Discovery Family has their own GO app which let's be honest, I really doubt people using that app anyways.

So I guess it's safe to say that Universal and Fox did adapt pretty decently in the streaming market right now with their own kids content. But with Discovery? They just don't care.

Honestly, at this point, I can't wait for Hasbro just ripped up the contract with Discovery next year because there is no point for Hasbro to keeping airing their shows on a network that no gives a crap about these days. Used to with The Hub, but with Discovery? Nah!

I mean they bought Entertainment One recently, so who's to say that Hasbro can make their own streaming service in the future? I just want to see The Hub come back because I'm getting sick and tired of Discovery's crap. It may take a long time to do that, but anything is possible.

So that's my take on it.

What do you think?
 

harry580

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i kinda wish universal kids launch in like early 2000s and fox bought saban stake in fox family worldwide and sony produce original progamming for pop uk and bring pop uk to the usa
 

Tacomaster

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People, please remember: after WB left to make their own kids network, Saban was all Fox really had. Sure, they made original cartoons before, but they were all coproductions with other studios, and Fox Animation was a feature animation studio. They wouldn’t have their own television animation arm until 1999, and it wasn’t even active until 2001. Saban was their second biggest supplier after WB.
 

harry580

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People, please remember: after WB left to make their own kids network, Saban was all Fox really had. Sure, they made original cartoons before, but they were all coproductions with other studios, and Fox Animation was a feature animation studio. They wouldn’t have their own television animation arm until 1999, and it wasn’t even active until 2001. Saban was their second biggest supplier after WB.
i wish fox television animation was formed in like 1988 or 1989 maybe started out as 20th television animation and producing children shows for fox kids and the simpsons before renaming it to fox television animation in 1994 with the foundation of fox animation studios, and if fox kids got a channel like in europe and as a sister channel to fox family make original programing maybe they get cross promotion for not only fox animation but also blue sky, dreamworks, and locksmith and make shows based on blue sky and boom you got fox kids to complete with the 3 kids networks and be the fourth one
 
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