YouTube announced today that it will be partnering with media outlets and celebrities to launch 100 online television channels. The announcement may highlight the social network’s attempt to shift from user-generated content to a more lucrative venture.
Although a few channels will roll out this month, most of the new channels will be launched next year and will provide 25 hours of original content every day. Participants range from Madonna, Jay-Z and Ashton Kutcher, to The Onion, the Wall Street Journal, and Thomas Reuters. It seems that YouTube’s battle with mainstream media has just ended.
Google, which owns YouTube, will pay $100 million to producers of the channels’ content, however once the channels get started they will run off of advertising revenue.
Not surprisingly, Google has also recently announced the introduction of search tools that will expand results into web and cable television shows.
With a recent study by GfK’s Media Efficiency Panel finding that online advertising gives a substantially higher ROI than television ads, it seems YouTube and Google will soon be cashing in on a great marketing opportunity.
To keep things social, YouTube will leave all its interactivity and social elements in place for these channels. And although the new content will be created by media professionals, we don’t doubt that it will still continue to be a platform for upcoming artists, humourous videos, and cute cats.
Find out more on the YouTube blog and let us know your thoughts.
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