Ever since buying YouTube back in 2006 for $1.6 billion, Google has had a hard time trying to make some money off of the entire project. Last April, Google decided they would work to reposition the site in hopes that its channel-based orientation would allow more revenue. In October, we learned that $100 million was spent on partnerships to further bring recognition and ad dollars to the platform.
I suppose all of this was just not enough for YouTube as we are learning that the popular video site may do what others are doing to bring in the cash: start charging for subscriptions.
If this all sounds crazy, we have details for you after the break.
While at the D:Dive Into Media convention, YouTube's CEO Salar Kamanger explained how the site has grown and evolved over the years. He said that even though a lot of time and money has been thrown into advertising on YouTube, it is possible that they would have subscription packages for watching certain channels or videos.
Kamangar went on to say that 20% of total video revenue in the industry is from sales or rentals, 40% is from subscriptions and 40% is from advertising. The idea here is that YouTube needs to capitalize on the largest sector they haven't focused on yet, which is subscriptions.
We also were told that it isn't completely out of the picture for individual content creators to charge a fee, either. For example, if you wanted a specific comedy channel, you would pay to see more premium videos from that creator. All of this, of course, is up in the air and nothing is even written up into a business model yet. However, many can speculate as Willow.tv has a channel on YouTube that users can subscribe and pay to see live Cricket tournaments and previous games. Also, with sites like Justin.tv, Ustream and Stickam all offering similar pay-per-view options, this isn't out of the realm of Google's world takeover plan.
Would you pay for your favorite videos or channels on YouTube? If so, how much? If anyone gets a survey from Google on this, we want to know! Share all of your thoughts in our comments section below.