After months of negotiations, YouTube will serve ad-supported, feature length films as soon as next month, an executive at a major entertainment company told CNet.
Said one of CNet’s sources, “I would say you can expect to see it, if all goes well, sometime within the next 30 to 90 days.”
According to one of our sources, the YouTube Live! event planned for Nov. 22 is a launch event. Until now, it seemed likely (if unwise) that Google (GOOG) would launch a live-streaming video service to rival Ustream or Justin.Tv. We think that would be an expensive mistake for Google. (As Yahoo (YHOO) recently learned; it’s shutting down its live streaing service.)
We’d applaud Google reshaping YouTube — at least its homepage — into a movies-oriented rival to Hulu. Why? When money is tight, advertisers don’t want to experiment on social media. But they’d love to put their brands next to High School Musical IX.
One question: If this is true, will Google need to change the way it delivers movies to make Hollywood happy? Right now, YouTube videos aren’t actually “streamed” at all — they’re downloaded to your computer without DRM. With the right tools, you can save them for later, strip out any ads, convert them to play on your iPod, etc. So will Hollywood loosen its standards and let YouTube deliver DRM-free movies that people can do whatever they want with? Or would YouTube have to adopt a real-time streaming infrastructure — like Hulu and the networks use — for Big Media content?
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