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TV Series vs. Web Series: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Harlon Moss || Published on January 20, 2024
TV series are episodic content traditionally broadcasted on television. Web series are designed primarily for online platforms or streaming.

Key Differences

TV series are traditionally broadcast through television networks with a specific schedule and often adhere to network standards and practices. Web series are distributed over the internet, offering more flexibility in release schedules and often less constraint in content.
TV series typically have longer episodes, adhering to standard television time slots, and often include commercial breaks. Web series episodes can vary in length, often shorter, and are usually free from the need to fit into specific time slots or accommodate commercials.
The production budget for TV series is often higher, reflecting the larger scale of network or cable television productions. In contrast, Web series can be produced with varying budgets, often lower, allowing for more independent and experimental content.
TV series are more likely to be influenced by network ratings and audience demographics, shaping their content and longevity. Web series have the advantage of niche targeting and creative freedom, as they are less dependent on broad ratings.
Accessibility to TV series typically requires a television set and a cable or satellite subscription. Web series are accessible to anyone with an internet connection, offering a wider reach and availability.

Comparison Chart


Television networks
Online platforms

Episode Length

Longer, fixed for time slots
Flexible, often shorter

Production Budget

Generally higher
Ranges from low to high

Content Constraints

Adheres to network standards
More creative freedom


Requires television access
Accessible via the internet

TV Series and Web Series Definitions

TV Series

A sequence of scripted episodes aired on television.
The detective TV series gained a huge following.

Web Series

A series available exclusively or primarily on online platforms.
The documentary-style web series gained critical acclaim.

TV Series

A show broadcasted in episodic format on television.
The sitcom became a popular TV series in the 90s.

Web Series

A series of scripted or non-scripted online videos.
The comedy web series went viral on social media.

TV Series

Televised content following a continuous storyline or theme.
He enjoyed watching historical TV series.

Web Series

Original content produced primarily for streaming on the internet.
She binge-watched a new web series on the streaming platform.

TV Series

Regularly scheduled programming on a television network.
The TV series was renewed for a third season.

Web Series

Digital media series often independent or lower-budget.
He created a web series with his friends and uploaded it online.

TV Series

Programmed content produced for traditional television channels.
Her favorite TV series airs every Thursday night.

Web Series

Episodes released through web channels or streaming services.
The web series explored modern dating life.


What is a TV series?

Episodic content broadcast on television.

Can web series be on TV?

Sometimes, particularly successful ones.

Are web series less restricted content-wise?

Yes, they often have more creative freedom.

Do TV series have more episodes per season?

Often, but it varies.

Is international access easier for web series?

Yes, they're often globally accessible.

Can TV series have online availability?

Yes, many are also available online.

Do TV series follow a regular schedule?

Typically, they have a fixed weekly slot.

Do web series have diverse genres?

Yes, they cover a wide range of topics.

How does a web series differ from TV?

It's primarily streamed online.

Are web series always short?

Often, but not necessarily.

Are TV series more mainstream?

Traditionally, but web series are gaining popularity.

How do streaming services affect TV series?

They've expanded access and viewership.

Can web series have interactive elements?

Yes, some incorporate viewer interaction.

Do web series creators face fewer restrictions?

Generally, they have more creative control.

Is there a budget difference between the two?

TV series generally have higher budgets.

How do ratings affect TV series?

They can determine a show's renewal or cancellation.

How do commercials impact TV series?

They're typically structured around ad breaks.

Are TV series typically longer in duration?

Yes, both in episode and series length.

Do web series require subscriptions?

Some do, but others are freely available.

Can a web series become a TV series?

Yes, if it gains enough popularity.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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