YouTube to launch paid channel subscriptions later this year

By on January 29, 2013, 11:17 AM

A handful of popular content producers on YouTube could start charging for channel subscriptions this spring, according to a report on AdAge. The move is intended to lure eyeballs and advertiser dollars away from traditional TV and would kick off with just a few a small group of unnamed channels charging somewhere between $1 and $5 a month.

AdAge says YouTube will lean on the media companies that have already shown the ability to develop large followings on the video sharing website for the initial paid-subscription rollout, including networks like Machinima, Maker Studios and Fullscreen. But the company is also looking outside its current roster of partners for candidates.

Whether partners intend to bring new, higher production value or exclusive content to the platform is unclear. YouTube knows users would be anything but thrilled over having to pay for content they've been watching for free, and as such they’re advising content makers to consider how their existing audience would react.

The revenue split from subscriptions is expected to be similar to the 45-55 split that is common for ads on YouTube -- ads in pay channels is also a possibility. In addition to episodic content, the company is also considering charging for content libraries, access to live events, a la pay-per-view, and other type of content. “We have long maintained that different content requires different types of payment models. The important thing is that, regardless of the model, our creators succeed on the platform,” a Google spokesperson told AdAge.

User Comments: 6

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Alvaro Alvaro said:

Not interested. I will unsub from anything that charges even a dime.

Littleczr Littleczr said:

Not interested. I will unsub from anything that charges even a dime.

Same here. Unless it's NBA games, I will gladly pay if they let me stream it on my phone.

SNGX1275 SNGX1275, TS Forces Special, said:

Same here. Unless it's NBA games, I will gladly pay if they let me stream it on my phone.

I'd pay for good quality NCAA basketball games. ESPN's offerings were good several years ago, now any high caliber game is blacked out on espn3. I end up finding the games on firstrow or vipbox and usually the quality is pretty good, but I always wade into those sides with noscript and adblock and make educated guesses on which scripts to allow in noscript. Simply because I don't really trust those sites, and going in unprotected seems risky, not to mention dealing with popups.

Even if they did start offering games, I'm sure they would charge something like $5.99 when all I'd be willing to pay is $1. Charge more than $1 and I'll just continue to watch them on firstrow and vipbox.

Nima304 said:

The most popular channels on YouTube make a ton of money from AdSense as is. I would probably unsubscribe to any channel that charges money.

Twixtea said:

Not gonna pay sorry

9Nails, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Content locked behind a dollar figure is content that I don't really need. I can find entertainment elsewhere.

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