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11.26.2007
Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
With viewers tiring of amateur production, Web video goes pro

User-generated Web video from amateurs is less alluring to online viewers and advertisers, according to a new report in “Businessweek.”

Online video sites that have long showcased amateur home video are scaling back their focus on user-generated clips, often in favor of professionally produced programming, the magazine reported.

“People would rather watch content that has production value than watch their neighbors in the garage,” said Matt Sanchez, co-founder and chief executive of VideoEgg, a company that provides Web video tools for online providers.

“Newsweek” noted that ManiaTV recently canceled its user-generated channels altogether because the 3000 user-generated channels didn’t pull in enough viewers. About 80 percent of visitors were watching the professionally produced content.

Hollywood TV and film writers and producers are eying the Internet. “For some people this is a different creative outlet,” Jeff Berman, MySpaceTV’s general manager, told “Businessweek.” “For others it is about having creative control. Others look at it as a new revenue stream.”

Advertisers — slow to embrace amateur video — are also attracted to the new wave of professionally produced Web content. “Advertisers feel better aligned with the professional stuff, and that is driving a lot of these changes,” said Jarvin Coffin, CEO of Burst.

Advertisers, the report said, will pay $60-plus per 1000 views to incorporate their ads alongside professional video content. They’ll pay around $7 to associate with user-generated videos, depending on the piece.



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