‘Clown Co.’ YouTube Killer to Launch


A News Corp and NBC Universal joint venture to distribute TV shows and movies online could be announced as soon as Thursday, according to the Los Angeles Times, following on a similar report from paidContent earlier this week.

The site would include premium video and “clips that users can modify,” and it would also syndicate the content on sites owned by Yahoo, Microsoft, AOL, and MySpace. The idea is to mount competition to tech companies Google and Apple, which have grabbed control of online media distribution while entertainment companies dallied.

“People close to the negotiations” distanced themselves from the moniker “YouTube killer,” saying they could possibly partner with Google as well, says the LA Times. However, Google continues to alienate big media, letting it slip that its internal nickname for the joint venture is “Clown Co.”

If big media has learned anything, and the content is reasonably priced, usable, and shareable, there’s no reason why the project couldn’t have a meaningful presence across its massive proposed audience. We shall see soon enough.

Perhaps YouTube should give up the ghost, and focus on the vibrant creator population it has fostered. The site does have its bragged-about 1,000-plus smaller distribution deals in the bank, and it’s apparently maintained traffic growth since Viacom started acting up. Maybe the long tail is where it’s at.

(Viacom dropped out of the joint-venture talks in favor of suing Google; Time Warner, CBS, and Sony Pictures Entertainment could still sign on, according to the LA Times.)



I don’t see how Viacom’s lawsuit precludes them from joining this Joint Venture. Actualy, I’d expect NBC to be the next to sue, to protect these new revenue channels.


I was just thinking – the likelihood of me commenting on a video probably decreases exponentially with the length of the video. But I don’t mind joining discussion forums about longer videos/movies.

Using myself as a basis, I’d say YouTube will remain a more social community where I’ll go when “I just want the clips”. Joost or this venture could become my destination if I actually want the full video.

Come to think of it, Joost is probably a more direct competitor than YouTube.


Liz, I have been there and done that. So I feel I know where the thinking for this venture is coming from and its not good or original.

In the long run “better access” for the same content will be coming from hundreds of places making this partnership irrelevant. Except for the main stream media…… of course.

Liz Gannes

So skeptical, Luis! I miss the YouTube of yore as much as the next person without cable, but any chance at more and better access to content seems good, no?

Luis Samra

Another proof that 1999 mentality and management still prevails. Better yet, the bozos with circus ideas still rule!

In the end they will get the press and nothing more.

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