Nobody doubts that we’re seeing a revolution in video, but there are revolutions and then there are revolutions. It’s not yet clear just how sweeping the video change will be. Some recent data from Nielson seems to show that while online video viewing is increasing, it’s increasing primarily within a largely static group. Not only that, the four-hours-plus of online viewing per month is insignificant compared to the average of more than 150 hours for TV.
Google is one of many companies that isn’t happy to see that outcome. In Google’s case, it’s trying to recast YouTube to attract more online video fans. Professional or at least semi-professional production is being encouraged, and there are some signs that Google may be close to addressing one of the biggest problems with YouTube, which is less the “production quality” issue than the “needle-in-a-haystack” issue. There are thousands of interesting and valuable YouTube videos, but it’s not likely that most will be viewed widely simply because they can’t be found.
Google seems to be working to offer the semi-pro regular producer better visibility, which would then insure more viewing. In turn, it would mean that viewers would likely be offered stuff that at least includes a strong dose of content that could credibly carry ads. Will this work? We’ll have to wait and see.