Much has been made about the YouTube deal with Seth “Family Guy” McFarlane in which Seth creates VERY short, occassionally funny animated pieces and they are combined with a McFarlane-esque pre-roll ad (this time from Priceline) and distributed via Googles video ad network.
This seems to be working pretty well for them in terms of overall views but I find the presentation to be, well, a total ripoff.
As an example, check out this episode:
If you were paying attention you might have noticed that the pre-roll ad was about 20 seconds and the actual cartoon was also about 20 seconds. That’s a pretty crappy ratio of sales to original content. It doesn’t help that the original content is just kinda funny, if that.
I can’t imagine this is a format that will work for most online webseries. While people do whatever they can to avoid ads on TV they are not going to put up with having to sit through an ad that is as long as the program they wanted to see in the first place online.
NewTeeVee is reporting about another entrant into the web video metrics game. If web video is going to become a serious advertising venue than the metrics have to improve.
“…a raft of new companies like TubeMogul and Visible Measures have launched in the past few months, joining companies like Brightcove, which has been providing this with video delivery for several years, and Google Analytics, which recently unveiled an event model that tracks user actions such as interacting with a video player.
Now web analytics giant Omniture is getting into the game. The firm hopes that by tying video player interaction to visitor outcomes, it can give marketers back some of the visibility they’ve lost, helping them to better understand the effectiveness of online video.”
This is going to be a major part of the story when it comes to the business of web video. Alongside search, aggregation and curating, metrics is gonna be huge.
William Morris is one of the oldest talent agencies in the land so the fact that they’ve set up a multi-million-dollar fund to invest in online companies is a small sign that this isn’t another bubble.
According to the NYT:
“On Monday, the William Morris Agency, the Hollywood talent shop, will announce that it is teaming up with the Silicon Valley venture capital firms Accel Partners and Venrock to invest in digital media start-up companies based in Southern California. What makes the combination unusual, though, is the addition of AT&T as a limited partner.”
Though, as NewTeeVee points out:
“Don’t be looking for massive money: investments will range from $250,000 to millions of dollars. The total fund size is in the “tens of millions” so they’re not going to blow it all on one company.”
I think the big thing here is that mobile companies are seeking ways to get more video to their customers. One hopes this will push the technology forward to a place that is at least close to the sort of coverage provided in many parts of Asia, where watching video on a mobile phone is commonplace.
LostRemote has a brief look on the latest restrictions the MLB is placing on websites in terms of what sorts of pro baseball footage they are allowed to distribute.
It sounds like an extremely rigid and mean-spirited set of guidelines that are meant to ensure people are forced to go to the official MLB site for anything worthwhile.
Well, we’ve all seen what happens when an organization tries to give the people a crap version of what they want – someone finds a way around it.
In general, this sort of policy seems to be counter to everything a National Pastime should be about. It should be encouraged that we share, post and exchange our favorite moments from the game. MLB should be supplying everything a fan could want to embed on their site or blog.
Let the MLB make its money through TV licenses, merchandise and ticket sales. If they keep their fan base faithful by treating them like partners that shouldn’t be a problem.
So, I had an interesting comment regarding my Girls Rule the Web post in which the question is raised:
“So, my question is, and I don’t think the article answered it, while young women are making a heck of a lot of “noise” is the proportion of quality content from them greater than, less than or the same as what the larger population is putting out?”
As I was pondering this, I read the following on DownloadSquad:
“Maybe the real question, then, is not whether the blogging/coding/podcasting girls of today will grow up to become software engineers, but to what kinds of interesting and innovative uses they will apply their skills in their chosen field. We’ll just have to wait and see, but my sans crystal ball prediction is that we won’t be disappointed.”
Not sure I have answers to either question but I do think it is important to remember that we’re talking about kids expressing themselves to each other, not some business venture or marketing model.
Are their contributions to the web adding something to the “noise?” Maybe not. But is it really the job of teenage girls to provide quality content to the general public. Unless you really dig reading diaries of a 12-year-old (in which case seek help) than most of what they create online won’t mean much to you. It isn’t meant for you, either.
Steve Bryant at the ReelPopBlog has a pretty interesting look at the relationship between what’s on the web and what’s on the screens.
“The Net’s challenge (and the studios) is to build off the Web’s chatter. To use the high-frequency, low amplitude buzz as constructive interference. Not just try to create viral videos, but to build online experiences that will replace the traditional upfront buzz-building mechanism. Releasing television shows on TV year-round is one thing, but you’re still pubbing slower than you could be online. So using the Web to seed the ideas — pilots released on Yahoo and MySpace or on their own sites, shows that play online until they get enough buzz to jump (“Quarterlife”), etc. — so that the networks always, always have something to tout — that’s the goal. Otherwise you’re an anachronism that may as well publish a station ID tag for half the year.”
Check out his whole post for graphs and everything!