Magma, a viral video tracker built by the Rocketboom team, was revealed in a sneak peak for attendees of the NY Video group last night. I selfishly love this idea, even if it’s a ways from being a business, or even a working service.
While companies like Visible Measures and TubeMogul selectively share interesting data, their real business is in their client relationships. Meanwhile, video search and discovery plays like Mefeedia, ffwd and Truveo (s TWX) use personalization, collaborative filtering and other more “black box” type tools to surface new videos. Magma quite simply will try to figure out what’s globally popular. Then it will give each live-updating video archive pages with cumulative stats, comments, likes, Tweets, Diggs and more from the various sites it’s hosted on (full screenshot below). There will also be personal collection tools in the vein of VodPod, but the Billboard chart-type stuff is more distinctive.
Gathering this data isn’t trivial, so I’m interested to see how well the beta works (sign up here). Rocketboom founder Andrew Baron has proposed many big ideas over the years so sometimes it’s our job to wait and see which ones turn out and which ones don’t. The project is bootstrapped at this point and looking for an angel round. As for the business model, Andrew Baron explains in a blog post that the design will include promotional ad space.
Another competitor, Unruly Media’s Viral Video Chart, which measures videos’ virality by how many blogs pick them up, makes its living by harnessing that data to help companies seed their would-be viral ads.