Posts Tagged ‘copyright’

No Need to Block YouTube Content Because of Copyright

October 23, 2008

I understand that most networks now have arenas on their own websites where users can go and stream programming, in some cases entire episodes the day after they are on TV.

But, I think it is about time that they stop worrying so much about their content being streamed through other popular websites such as YouTube. For example,  Last week’s episode of Saturday Night Live, which featured Tina Fey as Gov. Sarah Palin was a huge hit online, but within hours of upload, NBC’s attorneys were issuing take-down notices to YouTube.

In some cases, the exposure that these clips are getting on third party sites is even greater than what the actual broadcast received. Take for instance the recent episode of The Late Show with David Letterman which was supposed to feature Senator John McCain, but due to the budget crisis, and a McCain no-show, featured a 9 minute McCain slam-fest from Letterman. The video went viral on YouTube and now is pushing nearly 4 million views, over a million more viewers than the average audience for the broadcast of the show.

In addition to increased brand and show exposure online, it has been proven that videos posted on online video outlets contribute to increases in actual viewership of the show. In one example, after video clips were posted to YouTube, the The Late Show with David Letterman saw a 5% increase in viewers the very next day (see story). These numbers can obviously lead to more tangible successes.

I think CBS CEO, David Poltrack hit the nail on the head when he said, “When you have something the public really wants, the economic value in that is to come up with a way to satisfy the rights holders and serve the consumers.”

In my opinion, broadcast companies need to start playing the game a little bit more. For the most part, people are not re-posting these videos for monetary gains, but instead to share content that they think the rest of the world should be seeing, and maybe getting a gold star for posting the number one viewed video on YouTube for the day! Perhaps they should even look into enticing people to share this content. After all, how much is a video like this worth to the popularity of The Office? Just a thought.

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