Internet TV platform providers are dividing into two camps: those whose content libraries are closed, like Joost and Zattoo, and those whose libraries are open. This week, Babelgum and Azureus are taking steps to make their respective platforms more open by allowing independent content producers to upload directly to their sites and monetize their content.
Azureus’ Vuze platform is the more progressive of the two new offerings, as its self-service platform — which it is debuting at MIPCOM tomorrow — will enable content producers to upload and get paid for their content via advertising or paid downloads. Producers will only have to consult with Azureus if they wish to add digital rights management or geographic targeting to their videos.
Azureus is also announcing tomorrow that Vuze — which launched back in January — has been downloaded an impressive 10 million times, evidence that the company is starting to be successful in transitioning users of its popular BitTorrent client to its new commercial platform.
Babelgum’s new initiative, by contrast, is a bit less open, requiring uploaders to prove they are “a company and or individual in the business of producing or distributing content.”
Babelgum guarantees $5 per 1,000 views until it fully launches advertising on its platform at the beginning of next year, at which point it will split ad revenues 50-50 with content producers. Currently producers have to upload each video individually, but at the end of this month Babelgum is launching a batch upload program.
Another provider whose platform is quite open is Veoh TV; it even enables viewers to watch content from outside video-sharing sites such as YouTube and Metacafe.
Joost CEO Mike Volpi told us recently that his platform will remain closed for the foreseeable future. Joost has been the most successful independent platform at securing top-tier content, due in part to its promise to keep unauthorized videos off its platform. Volpi said Joost will increase opportunities for content producers to upload their content (à la Babelgum), but that users can go elsewhere to watch non-approved content. See the video interview below:
The nice thing is that none of the platform providers are being silly by demanding exclusive deals, so independent producers can spread their content far and wide and see what works best for them.