Published on March 2nd, 2013 | by Amy Edwards0
Are Paid Channels The Future Of YouTube?
By Amy @BubbleJobs
There’s no denying that we’re a YouTube generation. We like to access video on demand and we like to have the latest viral clips at our finger tips.. and it’s hard to beat the original video sharing site – YouTube.
Currently home to millions of millions of videos, YouTube is the undisputed king of video sites, with over eight years of content uploaded to the site every single day and more than 48 hours worth of video uploaded every minute – and it’s helped us to discover some of the best musical talent for generations (note: I’m not talking about Justin Bieber!).
The focus and main appeal of YouTube has always been on the fact anyone can upload content anywhere and it’s always been free to watch videos (albeit you do have to sit through a couple of seconds and ads every now and again) so the idea that the platform’s about to introduce paid channels has been met with mixed reactions this week.
Although there’s yet to be any official announcements, an article on Mashable suggests code found in YouTube’s most recent app shows Google (YouTube’s owner) might be working on the concept of pay-to-view channels. The article goes on to say that some sneaky coders spotted code which mentions subscribing and unsubscribing from paid YouTube channels – a function which is expected to be available on the web, rather than on the platform’s mobile app.
Now of course there has been rumours of Google introducing paid channels to YouTube for aaaagggesss – the last one even suggested they’d started reaching out to a small number of channel producers asking them to submit applications and create channels that users would pay to access (thought to be charged at between $1 and $5 a month) – and YouTube have even confirmed “different content requires different payment models” but this discovery is the first concrete evidence we’ve had that something is going to actually happen… and soon!
It’s not yet known what type of channels are going to be introduced and what type of content users will be requested to pay for – but it’s thought paid YouTube channels might be a great option for TV networks who don’t want to spend a fortune screening the latest series of a show whose ratings were less than impressive last time around on a commercial, expensive ‘traditional’ platform.
Of course, there are some critics out there who believe YouTube should remain a free-to-use platform and stick to its roots but with every man and his wife jumping on the VoD bandwagon (Tesco and Sainsbury’s are just the latest I’ve heard of), no one can really criticise YouTube for revolutionalising their approach and strategy for the modern on-demand audience.