Facebook has been talking about video for a long time.
It’s likely safe to say Facebook buys into the almighty value of a video advertisement as compared to the current static format most publishers run on their sites, thus their focus on adoption and distribution from page owners, most importantly some of the biggest brands in the world.
So the reality of streaming services bringing their content to Facebook Video certainly doesn’t seem out the realm of possibilities, and Amazon Prime Instant Video has jumped into the ring first.
Recently, Amazon Prime purchased the distribution rights to the Sharon Horgan/Rob Delaney comedy ‘Catastrophe,’ which should appease Prime subscribers, as our overall take on the series is very positive thus far.
But the interesting news here is that Amazon Prime is planning on premiering the U.S. release of the series (previously having aired in the UK) for free on Facebook Video. Video Ink is reporting that while this isn’t the first time a television channel has offered up a premiere for free online, most previous releases have been through YouTube, and none of the content owners has been a standalone streaming service similar to Prime.
The first episode of Catastrophe will be available for 48 hours starting at 4 p.m. today. That’s four days before the full first season becomes available on Amazon Prime Instant Video.
Amazon has traditionally made the first episode of many of the Amazon originals available for free in order to encourage signups for their Prime subscription offerings. This move to the world’s largest social network will likely act as a benchmark for further exploration for not only Amazon, but the other big players as well. In other words, it certainly seems likely Netflix, Hulu and HBO will certainly be watching this one closely.