Oh, you guys crack me up …
You love YouTube, hey, we all do. But you thought it was like the air, free and fun. Sure, maybe you deal with some popup ads now and then, but small price to pay to see a guy on a mountain bike take a handlebar to the nards!
I use it too. I upload stuff, I watch random stuff. I hunt movie trailers, seek out the best parts of Saturday Night Live … And it’s going to be FREE FOREVER!
Wrong. Many news outlets today are swarming around rumors that YouTube is mulling a payper model. It’s a bid to lure content providers to sell full shows, maybe even movies, for a fee. Like Apple’s iTunes store, but streaming to your computer or net-enabled phone.
See, it’s about selling content and eliminating the middleman (ahem, local affiliate). So let’s see who the players are: Fancast.com (which is Comcast), Hulu.com, which shows free full length streaming shows, owned by content providers NBCUni (being bought by content delivery cable/internet system Comcast), Disney (ABC), and News Corp (Fox).
Meanwhile, CBS is already partnered with Comcast (there they are again!) to deliver streaming on-demand TV content via cable TV in many markets.
And while Google (which owns YouTube) has been happy with the ad-supported model, now it looks like they want a piece of the subscription price model.
Comcast made the first move in what may be a new war for your dollar. Comcast, a content delivery system (cable), is intent on buying up a content producers (NBCUni), creating a potential soup-to-nuts vertical monopoly. Looks like Google, another content delivery system (YouTube) is making the next. Look for them to make a bid for a content developer in the future, any networks for sale? Wouldn’t it be interesting to see Google deal with theater chain heir Summer Redstone, who owns controlling interest in CBS and Viacom (MTV, Comedy Central … Paramount Pictures) … it’s gotta be in play if you look at the environment.
Makes perfect sense, own the platform, own the content, reap the rewards.
Won’t surprise me to see YouTube look next for a monthly fee for home users to maintain upload capabilities, an online library and all that stuff, you know, the things you’re doing now for free … and you’re hooked on. It’ll start as “premium service” but it’s going totally that way, wait and see.
Because by combining content production, delivery platforms and online distribution, everyone wins.
Uh, except you. You take it in the wallet.
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