Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Youtube Adds Star Trek, Other Classics in Full-Length
An online video war has been unofficially waged between Youtube and Hulu. In an ongoing effort to increase profitability, YouTube has partnered with CBS to provide Trekies full-length episodes of the American TV classic, Star Trek, as well as other pop-culture hits,such as Beverly Hills 90210 and MacGyver, (one of my personal favorites.) The deal will include advertisements before each show.
You may recall my post about the discussion between Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Jim Cramer, when Schmidt held his cards close to the vest regarding future plans for youtube and downplayed the pontential of bold moves in the future. Obviously, he didn't want to reveal the enhancements that were finalized within two weeks of his appearance on Mad Money.
In an interview with Mediaweek , YouTube’s director of content partnerships,Jordan Hoffner, wouldn't admit that the move was in response to rival site Hulu's recent growth. He said.
I’ve never seen Hulu’s books.This is just the right strategy for us. There is money in a lot of places. We’re making good on our pledge to give advertisers choice.This is about giving the community what they want. Plus, we’re not blind to the growth of long form on other sites. YouTube will announce several additional content partners in the coming weeks.
In the same article, YouTube product manager Shiva Rajaraman said the shows will be available on CBS' channel site, with a new, wide-screen player.
While YouTube has rolled out a new wide screen video player geared for long form content on, these shows will be accessible via CBS’ existing channel on the site. It’s important to merge this experience into the natural points of discovery on the site.While the CBS content will carry pre-roll ads - something that YouTube has shied from in the past, the ad model for short form content will not change. We’re very committed to overlay units.
What does this partnership mean for Youtube? At this point, it wont revolutionize the way people watch their favorite television episodes, but it could cut into sales for box DVD sets of those fore mentioned classic shows. Ultimately, this partnership with CBS could signify the first of many moves by Google to lure other major media networks to add their classic, and possibly contemporary hits, to help YouTube "live long and prosper."
By Matt O'Hern at 09:33 AM | Comments (0)