As HBO drums up promotion of the upcoming season of Games of Thrones, the premium cable network is trying a different approach: cozying up with the digerati. (Historically, HBO has greeted the Internet much Night’s Watch would approach a horde of White Walkers.)
Last week, the cabler held elaborate Games of Thrones-themed events in techie hotspots like Silicon Valley and Seattle–home base to Internet giants like Amazon, Google, Netflix prone to disrupting the archaic television distribution process.
The Los Angeles Times described the crowd at the party as a sea of t-shirts adorned with Twitter logos, with plenty of Google Glass to go around. That explains why we spied tech bigwigs, like AllThingsD co-executive editor Kara Swisher and Craigslist founder Craig Newmark in attendance.
So, why is HBO trading in the glitzy red carpet premieres for neckbeard laden shindigs? Uproxx hypothesizes it sees the “writing on the wall” since its subscriber growth rate has leveled. HBO wants to make a preemptive strike to protect its yearly $3 billion revenue before it emotionally collapses, Hannah Horvath style.
According to the LA Times, all that the hobnobbing with tech companies could help HBO secure better deals on their platforms.
Analysts say HBO was looking to strengthen its alliances with an emerging new distribution network and the social media companies that help spread the popularity of its original programming.
HBO’s glacial, but inevitable, decision to offer HBOGo as a standalone product could be a good first step if it come to an agreement with those pesky cable providers. Perhaps an autograph from Mr. Dinklage could smooth the way?