Google’s experiment in turning YouTube from the prime destination for videos of funny cats into something more worthy has been successful in its first year. So more channels, including some for international audiences, are on the way.
Original YouTube Programming
This time last year Google announced it was bringing original content to YouTube in a big way, with 100 premium channels being given a budget and told to go away and produce quality shows. New media companies, YouTube stars, and bona fide celebrities were all involved.
A total sum of $100 was handed out, and once channels made the money back from advertising revenues, they then took their cut. Everyone was set to be a winner, and generally speaking that’s the way it has turned out.
According to a post on the Official YouTube Blog, the top 25 original channels are now averaging more than one million video views every week, while the number of people subscribing to these channels has double year-on-year.
The International Push
The existing channels are now negotiating to be involved for another year, but Google is also busy adding an additional 60 channels worth of original programming. Most are still U.S.-only, but France, Germany, and the U.K. are getting their own channels added to the mix.
New channels for France include Studio Bagel, It’s Big, and VeryWatch; new channels for Germany include Motorvision, ShortCuts and Happy & Fit; new channels for the U.K. include HuHa, On Earth, and The Jamie Oliver Food Channel. There new U.S. channels include PopSugar, Planet 247, Daily Glow, and Inside My Kitchen.
Google’s intentions with this effort are clear. The company wants YouTube to become something more akin to a television network, fostering original programming wherever possible. And it’s an effort that is clearly working for many.
While not everyone is happy with the way things are going – AllThingsD has the details – most of those involved seem to realize they’re involved in the cusp of something close to a television revolution; one that many of us are keen to see the end result of.