Online entertainment platforms compete for exclusive content

June 03, 2020 - 08:28

Multiple online entertainment platforms have started to provide exclusive content as the COVID-19 epidemic has caused an increase in demand for such services.


Tháng năm dữ dội can be seen exclusively on online entertainment site POPS. Photo courtesy of

HCM CITY  Multiple online entertainment platforms have started to provide exclusive content as the COVID-19 pandemic has caused an increase in demand for such services.

Online entertainment site POPS has launched on its site a section called POPS Comic, which offers hundreds of world-leading comic books and webtoons for Vietnamese viewers.

Many Vietnamese comics titles, exclusively purchased by POPS, were viewed for free during the site’s first days of release.

Meanwhile, Danet has purchased the copyright to air the movie Cha và con và… (Father and Son and…), directed by Phan Đăng Di, to local audiences.

Similar to Cha và con và…, which was a rare case that did not make it to the local theatre, uncensored footage of the movie Thiên linh cái has been gathered into five episodes and has been broadcast on Galaxy Play since May 15.

Domestic movie producers depend on ticket sales and additional streams of revenue from other forms of distribution such as DVDs, the internet and copyright sales to foreign countries. 

However, with online entertainment becoming a global need these days, filmmakers cannot neglect the market anymore.

Online movie streaming helps producers make the most of their product, which was seen in the case of Thiên linh cái with its superstitious acts and Cha và con và… with its indie plot.

The new form of entertainment can be described as an extension of existing distribution systems such as Galaxy Play or Danet broadcasting movies produced by BHD Company.

With these platforms, audiences can now enjoy the movie right after it is screened in traditional theatres.

Challenges, opportunities

The increase in entertainment demand during the social distancing period revealed the scarcity of Vietnamese movies.

Most movies on Vietnamese entertainment platforms such as FPT Play, Galaxy Play, Danet, and VieOn are older products shown in theatres.

The number of local movies produced exclusively for the online entertainment industry is limited. As a result, this helped movies Phượng Khấu and Tháng năm dữ dội attract more online viewers when they first came out.

In response to demand, many businesses have carried out collaborations with content creators to create their own products for online entertainment sites.

Thiên linh cái: Chuyện chưa kể is the first among a number of movies series that Galaxy Play will produce in the time to come.

Meanwhile, after Phượng Khấu and Tháng năm dữ dội, POPS will release the new movie series Bánh bèo hữu dụng and Tỷ phú Idol, together with the second season of Nhà trọ có quá trời phòng and several other comedy series in June.

In addition to film production, POPS has also worked with local comic authors from Việt Nam, Comicola, to produce comic content.

POPS Communication Director Trương Tú Ngân said: “POPS is the first big playground for comics and POPS hopes that when the comics section is officially out in June, local comic creators in general will feel inspired to be able to create unique content in various forms for comic book fans."

Respect for creativity is key in engaging with content creators for successful exclusive content on online entertainment platforms. 

Since cultural management procedures are not as strict for online films compared to those released in theatres, filmmakers can be more creative with what they believe in.

The race to gain online audiences’ attention opens up opportunities for content creators, but also challenges for local businesses.

Nguyễn Tuấn from Danet said that BHD and Danet face fierce competition with foreign streaming giants such as Netflix as well as hundreds of websites distributing pirated content. 

Copyright-related issues are the biggest challenge interfering with the development of online entertainment market in Việt Nam.

Piracy is found in pirated movie sites and “big companies” as well.

Last year POPS sued FPT for copyright infringement related to more than 1,800 items of POPS’ content. 

Even though the lawsuit has not been resolved, FPT Play was caught recently broadcasting Phượng Khấu illegally. 

A representative from POPS said that big companies should work with each other to change the market’s habits and form new business rules and standards when it comes to copyright-related issues. — VNS