YouTube turning on to TV shows

Dan Grech Apr 17, 2009
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YouTube turning on to TV shows

Dan Grech Apr 17, 2009
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TEXT OF STORY

Steve Chiotakis: We got word late yesterday that Google profits jumped 9 percent in the first quarter, and part of its operating plan is to corner the Internet viewing market in search of ad revenue. Google owns YouTube, and it’s getting together with big entertainment giants such as Sony Picutres, Lion’s Gate and CBS to give it a boost against Hulu, its online competitor. Here’s Marketplace’s Dan Grech.


Dan Grech: No plans this Friday night? Why not YouTube a back episode of The Beverly Hillbillies?

Banker: Do you realize that now you have almost $40 million in my bank?

Jed Clampett: I reckon that money is gettin’ to be a powerful nuisance to you. I’m obliged to you for storing it here, but seems to me I ought to be paying you rent or something.

Banker: Oh no! I’m delighted to do it.

YouTube, the video-sharing Web site owned by Google, has launched a new section called “Shows.” You can watch hundreds of movies and thousands of TV episodes for free. But before you get to Hillbilly Jed Clampett, you’ll have to sit through a commercial for Cabot cheese.

Joseph Jaffe is president of Crayon, a new media consulting firm. He says sites like Hulu, Netflix and Crackle.com already offer Hollywood fare online. But YouTube has an advantage: 90 million visitors a month.

Joseph Jaffe: They’ve got the scale, they’ve got the bandwidth, they’ve got the capability. And for all of those reasons, they stand a better chance than others of being successful.

Even with that massive audience, YouTube is turning to TV and film to turn a profit.

I’m Dan Grech for Marketplace.

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