As per a report in the New York Times, YouTube is in talks to buy video content producer Next New Networks for an undisclosed sum. This news comes within a fortnight of Google acquiring Widevine [International: Google buys Widevine DRM service, “on demand is in demand;
http://www.exchange4media.com/e4m/izone1/izone_fullstory.asp?section_id=4&news_id=40273&tag=6578&search=y], a leading video-on-demand service.
One of the biggest problems that YouTube has faced in the past for premium content has been the ownership of said content, and while cases have gone the way of the streaming giant so far, they clearly don’t want to take chances and want to produce their own content as well to remain the biggest name in streaming video.
Next New Networks is an independent online video producer, and has created some of the most popular Internet programming distributed through YouTube. In 2010, the company produced two of YouTube’s most watched videos of the year and the startup has seen more than 1.2 billion views across its portfolio of videos.
This acquisition ties in neatly with the purchase of Widevine, as it would allow YouTube to become the destination for its own premium content, which could be more easily monetised that user-generated content. The site would remain driven by user content since it has been proven time and time again that predicting what will and won’t go viral is not always easy; but building campaigns and earning revenues against premium content, which is copyrighted and distributed over, say, mobile networks to the hundred-thousands of Android phones that Google tells us are being activated every single day? Sounds like the company might well be on to something here…
In July 2010, YouTube had already started playing a bigger production role, giving grants to some video creators to improve their operations. It also helps 15,000 content partners to promote and make money from their clips, and this month, it lifted the time limit on video uploads for many video creators.
Source: NYT [http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/16/technology/16tube.html?_r=4&src=tptw]