Ex-Hulu CEO Jason Kilar Unwraps YouTube Rival Vessel

Advertising Age

For $2.99 a Month, People Can Watch Top YouTube Stars’ Videos Days Before They Hit YouTube

By . Published on December 17, 2014

Vessel will launch early next year with mobile apps for Apple's iPad and iPhone.Vessel will launch early next year with mobile apps for Apple’s iPad and iPhone.

Almost two years after stepping down as Hulu‘s CEO, Jason Kilar is ready to open up about why he plans to take on YouTube with his new company Vessel.

“Video creators have used the internet exclusively for their distribution. They can become popular. They can generate a following. They can even create a brand. But so far, they haven’t yet been able to build a great business on the basis of video distribution digitally alone,” Mr. Kilar said in an interview on Tuesday.

Vessel will launch early next year as an ad-supported, subscription-based streaming-video service with the tagline “Watch your favorites here first.” People will pay $2.99 a month to watch videos from some of their favorite YouTube stars at least three days before new content hits the Google-owned video service or anywhere else. Ad Age had previously reported on Vessel’s plans.

Just like there are people willing to sit through commercials to watch a TV show live or pay $12 to see a movie in theaters, Mr. Kilar thinks there are people willing to pay for early access to YouTube videos.

“What we’ve created at Vessel is what we internally call the web’s first window,” Mr. Kilar said. What Vessel has also created is a velvet rope for digitally native content, putting the web’s most popular medium — short-form video — on the same premium pedestal as TV or movies. By this time next year, his company likely won’t be alone as YouTube and online video networks AwesomenessTV and Fullscreen are each expected to premiere their own subscription-based services. (more…)

YouTube Star Zoella’s First Week Book Sales Surpass J.K. Rowling’s Debut


MEDIA | By  on December 6, 2014

Zoe Sugg

“Girl Online” moves 78,000 units in its first week

Zoella is apparently as popular on the bookshelves as she is online.

The YouTube sensation, also known as Zoe Sugg, sold  78,109 copies of her debut novel, “Girl Online,” in its first week of release, theTelegraph reports.

That number represents the highest first-week sales for a first-time author on record, or at least since Nielsen BookScan first began keeping tabs of sales in 1998.

It also puts “Girl Online” well ahead of the first-week sales of J.K. Rowling‘s “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone,” published in 1997.

“Girl Online,” published Nov. 25 under the Simon & Schuster imprint Keywords Press, is billed as a “coming-of-age novel that perfectly captures what it means to grow up and fall in love in today’s digital world.”

Zoella, 24, became a YouTube hit with her fashion and beauty videos. Her YouTube channel, has amassed more than 6.5 million subscribers with more than 300 million views. (more…)


Nielsen Logo

By Chris Louie, VP Product Leadership
BLOG| 11-24-2014

For over 50 years, there was only a single “app” for TV viewers. It was an entertainment app whose sole function was to stream premium video content. Over the years, new versions of the app were released, including more channels, an interactive programming guide, higher definition displays, and the ability to record and playback programs. Viewers could customize their version of the app to some extent by negotiating with their app developer – that is, their cable or satellite company.

But regardless, the app still basically did the same thing. And it was available on just one screen: the TV set. Given that the broadcast and cable networks could not differentiate on the user experience, they focused on their one point of differentiation: the content they offered.

Every one of these facts of TV viewing no longer holds. There are now many TV viewing apps available. They can be viewed on many screens. And UX (user experience) is now an important source of differentiation in attracting viewers and capturing their attention and time. Behind these changes are a number of factors:

  • The proliferation of broadband suitable for delivering premium video content
  • The broad adoption of devices capable of displaying premium video content
  • The connected nature of these devices, including TV sets themselves, enabling on-demand viewing
  • The emergence of multi-channel video programming distributors (MVPDs) beyond the big cable companies (e.g., Hulu, Netflix, Amazon)
  • A boom in high-quality video content, which can be produced with relatively cheap A/V equipment and editing tools

All of this is contributing to a wide range of TV experiences. Given that these experiences are being delivered via connected devices powered by distinct operating systems, I think it’s helpful to characterize these developments as “the appification of TV.”


Internet to Hit 3 Billion Users in 2015


Nearly half the world’s population will have regular access to the web by 2018

L.A.’s the place for YouTube stars seeking wider fame


Meg DeAngelis, right, hosts the YouTube series "Makeup Mythbusters."
Courtesy:Awesomeness TV

Meg DeAngelis, right, hosts the YouTube series “Makeup Mythbusters.”

by Queena Kim

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

If you keep track of this stuff, you might have noticed quite a few YouTubers crossing over into the mainstream lately. They’ve landed network TV deals and spots on reality shows. Then there’s Michelle Phan, who spun her Internet fame into a line of cosmetics for L’Oreal.

The success of stars like Phan has inspired YouTubers like Meg DeAngelis to make the pilgrimage to Los Angeles – which is emerging as the center of YouTube entertainment business – in search of Internet gold.

A college dropout, DeAngelis started making videos in eighth grade when she was into gymnastics. Her early videos show her executing backflips and other tumbling moves. The videos are washed out, the sound is distant. They look like clips of a young girl just having fun.

“I started by posting videos that were like my hobbies,” DeAngelis says. “Stuff that wasn’t meant to be like a genre or a channel.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49exTWN99oI (more…)

Americans now spend more time on mobile devices than watching TV


BY  on November 19, 2014

Chart via Flurry.

Mobile devices have trumped TV for our daily screen time.

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Flurry Analytics found that time spent on smartphones and tablets have reached two hours and 57 minutes for the average American, which is up 9.3 percent from nine months ago. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Americans spend two hours and 48 minutes per day watching TV — a number that has stayed flat for more than two years.

This marks the first time that mobile device screen time usage has surpassed TV time.

“As of September 2014, it is a new world in the American living room,” Flurry wrote.

Flurry, which is owned by Yahoo, also found that the mobile device use increase mostly came from apps not ranked highly on leaderboards like ComScore, but rather time spent with lesser-known apps. Because of this, Flurry noted that “independent developers have survived attempts by large players to consolidate the ecosystem” based on time spent with non-popular apps.

Read the full report here.

Taylor Soper is a GeekWire staff reporter who covers a wide variety of tech assignments, including emerging startups i

Conde Nast Entertainment Hires YouTube Stars for Original Video Push

Advertising Age

Make-up Artist Kandee Johnson to Star in Series Debuting Next Year

By . Published on November 14, 2014.

Conde Nast Entertainment is signing exclusive deals with YouTube stars like Kandee Johnson.Conde Nast Entertainment is signing exclusive deals with YouTube stars like Kandee Johnson.

The Conde Nast of old aimed to sign star scribes like Christopher Hitchens and photographers like Annie Lebowitz. The Conde Nast of now has its sights set on YouTube stars.

To meet the content demands of its growing millennial audience, the magazine publisher’s digital-video division, Conde Nast Entertainment, has begun signing YouTube stars to wide-reaching agreements that will make the publisher the exclusive representative for the creators’ digital deals, including ad sales for their YouTube channels. As part of the deals, the YouTube creators will star in original shows to air on Conde Nast’s properties and contribute to its various publications.

The first of these deals is with make-up artist Kandee Johnson, whose main YouTube channel boasts 2.4 million subscribers and has notched 262.9 million views. Ms. Johnson will star in a number of original series to be produced by Conde Nast Entertainment. Those series will run across Conde Nast’s YouTube channels, publication sites and its streaming video site, The Scene, as well as on properties that it has syndication deals with, such as AOL, Yahoo,Dailymotion, Roku and Xbox. (more…)

mun2 will rebrand and relaunch as NBC UNIVERSO

Media Moves

By Veronica Villafañe
Posted on 04 November 2014.

mun2 will drop its name to become NBC Universo on February 1, 2015.

Telemundo’s sister bilingual cable network is dropping the name it’s had since it launched in 2001.

Calling it a “major step in its evolution,” the NBCUniversal Cable-owned property, which until now was aimed at a young Latino audience, will relaunch as “NBC Universo” on Sunday, February 1, 2015 as an entertainment and sports network.

The rebrand to NBC UNIVERSO takes place the day that the network becomes the home of the exclusive Spanish-language telecast of Super Bowl XLIX in the U.S.

As part of its new branding, the network will use a logo that features NBC’s iconic peacock.

NBC UNIVERSO will showcase sports action from around the world, as well as entertainment, music and series that the company says will connect with U.S. Hispanics.

“mun2′s transformation into a high-demand cable network is one of our top company priorities,” said Joe Uva, Chairman, Hispanic Enterprises and Content, NBCUniversal in a statement.

In September, mun2 launched the first of 100 matches it will air of the 2014/2015 season of the Barclays Premier League (BPL), as well as the first of five NFL games to air on the network this season. Also in September, mun2 became available for distribution in HD.

In addition to the NFL and BPL, NBC UNIVERSO will partner with NBC Sports Group and Telemundo to cover four FIFA World Cup events in 2015: Men’s FIFA U-20 World Cup, hosted by New Zealand from May 30 to June 20; FIFA Women’s World Cup™ played in Canada from June 6 to July 5; Men’s FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup hosted by Portugal from July 9 to July 19; and FIFA U-17 World Cup played in Chile from October 17 to November 8.

NBC UNIVERSO also will exclusively showcase The Rio 2016 Olympic Games, The NASCAR Mexico Toyota Series and WWE programming hits WWE Raw and WWE Smackdown in Spanish.

On the entertainment front, NBC UNIVERSO will continue to develop and deliver a broad mix of original, signature and acquired series and reality shows, such as their current productions “A Toda Gloria,” “Larrymania” and “Fugitivos de la Ley.”

Blockbuster movies and music offerings aimed at a modern Latino audience will also be key programming pillars of NBC UNIVERSO. Specific entertainment programming details will be released in early 2015.

Syfy Remains at the Forefront of Digital Publicity with Unique Press Tour – Ed Martin


October 22, 2014
Bill McGoldrick, Tricia Helfer and Dave Howe
Published: October 22, 2014

Syfy on Sunday and Monday in Orlando produced its eighth annual Digital Press Tour – a one of a kind event in television publicity and promotion that puts the network’s executives and the stars and producers of its series together with influential bloggers, robust tweeters and other digital communications experts and enthusiasts who operate outside of what might be referred to as the “traditional” press.

The digerati that attend this event every year aren’t the same people commonly found at other media press functions such as the twice-yearly Television Critics Association tours and the Upfront and NewFront presentations and parties that every year overwhelm reporters’ schedules from February thru May. Rather, these folks focus almost exclusively on science-fiction and fantasy content, a particular sweet spot in the digital space. In other words, there is no filler here. Every attendee has a following that potentially supports the programming that Syfy offers.

One of the most interesting aspects of the Digital Press Tour is the fact that everyone at Syfy from network president Dave Howe on down actively encourages the digerati to not only interview talent and producers but to shoot videos of them and take photos of them. Taking pictures at other industry press events (including those mentioned above) can result in reporters being ejected from said activities or given stern warnings. Bizarrely, the taking and posting of photos – now as common an occurrence in everyday life as breakfast, lunch and dinner – is forcibly frowned upon at many industry gatherings of press and talent. That has never been the case at a Syfy tour. (more…)

Do Other People’s YouTube CPMs Look This Good?

Hank Green on Oct 5

There has traditionally been a taboo against publicly discussing this stuff, but I think that’s dumb.

I have a very small YouTube network with about 15 channels (mostly owned and operated by our company) and we upload around 3 videos per day. This actually creates enough data points that we can see a pretty good sketch of the growth of YouTube ad rates since we were granted CMS privileges (don’t worry about what that means) back in 2012.

This is our CMS page, it basically just allows us to link a bunch of YouTube channels under one account and gives us the ability to claim content that rips us off. If a company claims to be an MCN, all it means is that they have access to this system. (more…)