The Royal Canadian Air Farce – Ready for Download

The Royal Canadian Air Farce has provided humor for Canadians over the many years it’s been on the air. It’s probably one of CBC’s biggest comedy hits to hit the air waves.

Note: This is an article I wrote that was published elsewhere first. It has been republished here for archival purposes

It is also available for free download (AKA “Pirated” to the recording industry) on the Internet just like most other TV shows. So what’s the difference? These “pirated” copies are distributed for free without commercials on the Air Farce official website.

This concept is in contrast to the file-sharing world, where one takes the minimal risk of being sued by TV executives for downloading free content. The basis of the possible lawsuit would be to stop the downloading and protect revenue flow. The way Air Farce is going may completely turn the whole age-old TV business model upside down. No commercials? No fees? No signup? To Air Farce, no problem.

The other interesting fact is that Air Farce enjoys a very strong fan base. Their ratings seem to have kept up and they are on their 13th successful season. Unlike the other 12 seasons, the 13th season seems to be breaking away from the on-stage sets and moving into off-stage sets which would most likely cost more money to make. The other interesting part about the 13th season is all their episodes are currently streamed. Clearly, they are making a lot of money and it may also be thanks to increased promotion by giving away their content for free. No, it’s not just small clips, they are entire episodes broken up into small chunks for better downloading and streaming ease.

Perhaps they are, unlike many other TV shows, embracing new technology and digital breakthroughs mostly thanks to the Internet. This comes as a welcoming sign by many techno-savvy folks many wish all TV executives would embrace. In addition, this strategy propels “Air Farce” well beyond the confines of Canadian broadcasting and into the computer monitors and TV sets of netizens around the world.

One of the original stars of Air Farce said once in the interview, “We made a pact when we first started this. We agreed to only do this until the fun stops and the ratings take a nose dive. To this day, the fun hasn’t stopped.”

Clearly, the fun hasn’t stopped. DVDs for each season is released seemingly the day the final episode airs so fans can show their support by buying the DVDs right when the season ends. This is a nice change considering shows like “The Simpsons” takes years to make it to DVD. They are currently on their 17th season and the DVD’s currently available are only available for the first 5.

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

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