With Google’s deep pockets, YouTube has done a great job of creating the most trafficed video site on the internet. Upstart Hulu blasted onto the scene only months ago to show there’s money in ad supported full length content, out earning YouTube and every other online video portal. You tube has moved quickly to upgrade its uber crappy video quality, and has been on the hunt for premium content. The new deal with MGM gets the site closer to the mark. The next question is ad revenue. Google’s strategy is a 100% automated system, while Hulu has the benefit of leveraging long standing sponsorships fostered over many decades at NBC/Universal and Newscorp/Fox.
Last month, YouTube launched full-length programming from CBS; now, YouTube has told Reuters it will be offering full-length television shows and movies from MGM. The move would make MGM the first studio to offer full-length movies via YouTube.
An official announcement is expected today, but the MGM offerings are expected to follow in the format of CBS programming that has appeared on YouTube, including the original Star Trek series. Shows will likely sport pre-roll advertisements that can’t be skipped, and advertising alongside the shows. It’s not know at this time whether Google will be selling ad space alongside the programming or whether (like CBS) MGM will do its own ad placement. Industry watchers expect that advertising revenue for the shows will be split between the two companies. (Gigaom)