YouTube as we know looks set for major changes....
The free, if increasingly ad-heavy, video site seems increasingly determined to make a jump into premium content following two pieces of breaking news from the broadsheets today.
Firstly The Guardian is reporting Google executive David Eun as saying YouTube may need to introduce a paid subscription model - as least for some content in the near future. "We're making some interesting bets on long-form content; not all content is accessible to us with the advertising model," he admitted.
This isn't surprising given YouTube is reported to lose Google almost half a billion dollars a year and even for the search giant this isn't small change. Furthermore, securing high quality films and television would require substantial further investment.
Speaking of which, the Telegraph claims that Sky has pulled out of talks with Google about hosting some of its most popular home grown shows on YouTube. Coincidentally, the collapse allegedly occurred because Sky decided it would not give away its content for free. It is also comes on the back of Sky majority shareholder Rupert Murdock's accusations that Google News 'steals' content from its publications which would indicate the two aren't on the best of speaking terms.
“The pay model is at the heart of our business and allows us to invest significantly in high-quality, distinctive content," a Sky spokesperson confirmed to the paper. That said, Sky is clearly at a crossroads. Sky Player isn't a runaway success, Sky on the Xbox and Windows 7 is extremely well realised and the BBC is courting it about joining Canvas. Broadcaster or end-to-end service provider? It's a dilemma Sky needs to work out soon.
Still, we'll end on a happy note as YouTube has also today revealed its most watched videos of 2009 as well as the most popular search terms of each month. With a monstrous 120m views Susan Boyle's Britain's Got Talent audition won out ahead of 37m for David After Dentist and 33m for the JK Wedding Entrance. As for the search terms they panned out as follows:
February: christian bale
March: the climb
April: susan boyle
May: pacquiao vs hatton
June: michael jackson thriller
July: michael jackson
August: usain bolt
September: kanye west
October: paranormal activity
November: bad romance
December: tiger woods
Ok, that wasn't a happy note at all. *considers taste of the human race and puts gun to head*