YouTube to Partners: Rental Content Wanted

Thursday, January 28, 2010 | 4:55 PM

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You, the YouTube partner community, have been telling us for a long time to offer revenue options outside of our ad-supported model. To answer these requests, last week we announced YouTube Rentals, a new, transactional model that we hope will help meet your business needs and bring more great content to our community. We launched this "beta" version of our video rental service for U.S. consumers with a small number of independent filmmakers featured at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. Through this new offering, content owners now have control over the entire lifecycle of their work. They can migrate videos from rental to ad supported; they can set the price and rental duration. In short, they can test and customize their distribution to fit their audience's habits and their business' needs.

We've invited a small number of additional beta partners in other categories to begin offering videos for rent on YouTube, and thousands of such videos are now available. Here are just a few:

There's no recipe for whether content is best monetized on a rental or ad supported basis, but based on the videos our beta partners are submitting, here are some general guidelines for the type of content that might be a good fit for this new program:

  • Topics or genres with small but highly passionate audiences will likely monetize well through a rental model
  • Paying users generally expect longer duration videos with high production value and encoding fidelity

As we improve the product based on feedback from users and partners, we will invite more content creators into the rental program. Eventually, our goal is to make the service available to all content creators who follow our community guidelines and produce videos that appeal to users on a rental basis.

If you are a current or prospective YouTube content partner based in the U.S., you own videos you think will find an audience through rentals, and you're interested in participating in the U.S. consumer beta, please apply here. We'll review your information and reach out to you as soon as we can accommodate your request. If you're based outside the U.S., don't despair. Feel free to apply and we will contact you when the service becomes available in your region.

Posted by The YouTube Team