Networks' 'Own' Version Of YouTube Finally Coming

from the and-so-it-goes dept

For many months there have been not-very-well-concealed rumors that the various TV networks were talking with each other about creating their own YouTube competitor — though, from the start the idea sounded destined for trouble. The networks couldn’t agree with each other on the revenue split, showing that they were (once again) more focused on the short-term revenue possibilities, rather than the long-term opportunities to build a new platform that actually served viewers’ needs better. The latest news is that News Corp. and NBC Universal are about to announce such a platform, though some suggest that there may be last minute additions from other content companies. No one seems totally clear on exactly how this new “platform” will work — and if it will be a destination site on its own or simply a centralized system for distributing videos to other sites. Already, the entity has worked out deals to put videos on, well, just about everyone but Google’s video sites. Yahoo, Microsoft, AOL and MySpace will all have access to the videos. Without more details, it’s hard to get a sense of how good or bad this move is likely to be. While we’re skeptical that these companies will get it right (there’s a lot of history of them getting these types of things very wrong), it’s a good sign that they’re focused on the distribution element of it rather than retaining complete control over the videos. It’s also a good sign that all of these content providers (even, to a certain extent, Viacom) seem to be recognizing that rather than just shutting down these new distribution avenues, they need to learn how to use them to their advantage. That’s definitely an improvement over where we were a few years ago. There are plenty of ways the networks can (and probably will) screw this up, but at least they’re doing something.


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Comments on “Networks' 'Own' Version Of YouTube Finally Coming”

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9 Comments
That Guy says:

Food for the goose

I think the general themse that the big media companies are “against these new distribution avenue” is a short viewpoint from their critics.

Let’s strip away the politics and look at it for what it is.

These new distribution avenues are large searchable sites that allow for the distribution of video.

Well, no one has a problem with that.

The problem comes back to ownership. Big media spends millions to produce content, and billions to create a broadcast infrastructure to show that content. So when a kid with a $50 capture card takes their product, gives it to a “new distribution avenue” to show online, and the “new distrubtion avenue” turns around and then sells ads for people to watch big media’s content online, you sort of have to expect Big Media to get a little mad.

I’d be interested to see how the authors of Tech Dirt would feel if the content of their site was published on another site, and that other site generated ad revenue from the content that was created here.

One would think if the tech dirt authors truly felt believed in what they preached then they would fully support that model.

Darok says:

Re: Food for the goose

–I’d be interested to see how the authors of Tech Dirt would feel if the content of their site was published on another site, and that other site generated ad revenue from the content that was created here.–

Isn’t that the whole point behind a blog? (which is the format techdirt follows).

Provided due credit is given to your sources (In blog terms, a link, or for video distribution, would be the name of show/program) common net-etiquette has no problem with it.

Mike (profile) says:

Re: Food for the goose

I’d be interested to see how the authors of Tech Dirt would feel if the content of their site was published on another site, and that other site generated ad revenue from the content that was created here.

Why is it that someone feels the need to ask this like once a week? Every week the answer is the exact same. YES, we’d LOVE IT if the content on Techdirt was published on other sites. In fact, there are quite a few sites that already do that.

Most sites that republish our content link back to us. There are about 4 or 5 that don’t — and just copy our content and pretend its their own. Again, we don’t really have a problem with that. It’s a little annoying that they don’t want to give us credit, but, honestly, no one actually visits those sites so it really doesn’t matter. And, if anyone actually does visit those sites, it won’t take them long to realize the content originated at Techdirt, and it’s easier to get it here. In other words, those sites are really promoting us.

And, of course, those other sites don’t have the comments… and don’t have us responding to the comments. So they lose out there as well. They can copy us all they want, and the effect is either neutral or will end up promoting us.

So, please, go ahead and start another site that copies our content!

One would think if the tech dirt authors truly felt believed in what they preached then they would fully support that model.

Yup. And we do. Why did you assume otherwise?

Witty Nickname says:

YouTube’s biggest advantage isn’t professional content. It is usability. All you need is a browser with Java, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera… they work. Not to mention the search capacity.

Have any of you tried Innertube (CBS’s Video site)? I tried it out the other day. I was impressed at first, very clean comfortable homepage design, looked very nice. Then you try to search, it did not work well, then try to play without RealPlayer. Am I the only one who HATES RealPlayer? I leave the installation on my computer in case there is a video I really want to see, then uninstall afterward. It is a system hog and I hate how it hangs out in my system tray!

Then try to send a link to a friend, even the techdirt authors had a hard time embedding a video into their blog. (Yes I realize there is an e-mail this to a friend, but what is the problem with copying and pasting the URL for an IM or something?)

Anyway that is my rant. Innertube will be a destination for people who want a particular clip, YouTube will still be popular because of usuability. We will see how well this new site will work, lets hope they get it right.

Anonymous Coward says:

No luck needed

I say there efforts are too little too late. Unless they spend millions on advertising they are not going to take away any market share from YouTube.

They aren’t trying to capture the market on home made videos of fat guys rolling in the mud pretending to be Shakira.

They will, indeed, take away market share from YouTube because you will have to get your professionally produced content from the people who produced it. Comedy Central has already reduced my use of YouTube.

Don’t cry for YouTube. It is an expanding market and their absolute numbers and revenue will grow. But their share will diminish.

The antipathy on this blog towards people trying to make a living by creating content and offering it for viewing on their own website is very strange. The only difference between NBC and the guy in Des Moines who wants his video seen only on his blog is that NBC spends a lot of money to produce video more people want to see. Why should the guy in Des Moines get special rights denied to NBC?

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