eGuiders is a recently launched site that provides editorial recommendations for what it considers to be the best video on the web. It likens itself to a TV Guide for the Internet, and if your only source of information were USA Today, you’d think eGuiders was the first one to think of this, shall we call it, newteevee guide.
But alas, eGuiders is not the first, second or even third player in the web video recommendation space. Other sites such as Tubefilter, Tilzy and even our own NewTeeVee Station (disclosure, all three of us are working together to produce the Streamy Awards) all aim to cut through the clutter of web video to point out what’s worth watching online.
So what makes eGuiders different? For one, none of these existing sites have traditional media heavyweights like Damon Lindelof (Lost), Shawn Ryan (The Shield) or John Landis (Animal House) contributing recommendations.
This traditional media connection is no surprise, as eGuiders’ co-founder and CEO Marc Ostrick is sort of a bridge between old media and new. He’s a filmmaker who worked to deliver webisodes and other online extensions of programs such as John From Cincinnati and 24.
Los Angeles-based eGuiders received a seed round from a private investor, and it currently has three employees. While it does have some high-profile recommenders, those are just the guest eGuiders, and a core team of independent contractors from the old and new media worlds provides the rest of the reviews. eGuiders took its beta public on Dec. 22, and it plans to make money through advertising and possibly widget syndication. Which sounds a bit dicey, considering non-scalable editorial fees and the whole global economy meltdown.
During a phone interview with Ostrick today, I asked him about the existing competition, and how eGuiders is different. Ostrick said that eGuiders is going after a slightly older demographic (24 and up) and is not trying to keep up with the latest series. Many recommendations, according to Ostrick, will be hidden gems from yesteryear. Case in point: on the eGuiders homepage today showcases Rejected, on Atom.com, a video from 2000.
While I may not be eGuiders’ target audience, I’m not sure exactly what new it is bringing to the online video guide table. Sure, finding out what the co-creator of Lost finds amusing online is kind of neat, but at the end of the day, do I need another site to tell me that You Suck at PhotoShop is funny?