When Google announced YouTube Red this week, it confidently stated 99 per cent of existing content would continue to be available on the service.
However part of the 1 per cent that is one especially major player.
ESPN has removed all video content from 11 of its 13 YouTube channels, including Grantland (pictured), seemingly in reaction to the new service.
Google has already confirmed those who wouldn’t sign onto the terms would automatically have their videos set to private, so it seems ESPN has decided to pull all content completely.
YouTube’s controversial policy has been largely derided as a strong arm tactics, giving contributors who make a living through YouTube ad revenue little choice but to jump aboard.
A YouTube spokesperson reiterated to Deadspin: “Today, the overwhelming majority of our partners, representing nearly 99-percent of the content watched on YouTube, have signed up. Videos of partners who don’t update their terms will be made private, but we remain committed to working closely with these partners with the goal of bringing them on board.”
While Google has to be happy with securing 99 per cent of content for its new $9.99 a month service, ESPN leaves a pretty large whole.
Interestingly ESPN’s parent company Disney has agreed to YouTube’s terms and its content will appear on YouTube Red.
Whether there are circumstances preventing ESPN remonetising its licensed sports content through external subscription services remains to be seen.
ESPN has declined to comment thus far.