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Video 2.0 Meetup: MTV Speaker

March 29, 2007

Last night, MTV Networks presented at the Video 2.0 Meetup group in New York, along with Payoneer, On2, and Brightcove.

Kenny Miller, EVP & Creative Director, Global Digital Media of MTV Networks spoke about what they were doing and gave his insights into the online video industry. Very educational and insightful presentation. Here are some highlights:

  • MTV Networks is in a test and learn phase. Nobody knows for sure what the perfect formula is for advertising and monetization of video content. So they’re throwing a lot of stuff out there to see what works.
  • TV, in a nutshell, is a social medium. It’s part of culture. Everyday people socialize and discuss television, and families and friends gather together to watch TV. It connects people. The question is how do you bring this to Internet video? Kenny shows us a great example of community video watching. He went to The N and started playing an episode of Instant Star. During the episode, community pop up bubble overlays would appear on the video that would display comments/chats of viewers. Essentially, people were able to chat with one another as the video played. Pretty slick if you ask me.
  • Kenny claims that while TV is a “lean back” medium and Internet tends to be “lean forward”, Joost and full size high quality videos start to feel “lean back”. This raises interesting questions from an advertising perspective. Anything longer than 15 seconds may feel extremely long for a online video stream. However, on TV that’s short. So if an online video experience is more “lean back” in nature, you may be able to get away with longer advertising.
  • “Talent is the rarest commodity.” Kenny says that there is plenty of technology out there but the best content is missing. Sounds similar to what Eisner said when he started his Internet production company Vuguru.
  • Before Kenny presented, Yaron Samid, the NY Video 2.0 Organizer and our fearless leader, played the Jack Black promotional video for Acceptable TV. For those of you who haven’t heard of this yet, Acceptable TV is an experimental show put on by VH1 that allows viewers to watch user-generated video and vote which ones will show up on VH1 every week. Very cool idea. Someone in the audience asked whether the creators get advertising revenue if their work is shown on VH1. The answer was no. However, a lot of us agree that the “payment” for a creator is exposure and fame. I don’t think this is a problem at all.

Do I need to point out the irony of linking to You Tube for a Viacom owned clip?

  • Somewhere on The N, there’s a mash up feature that allows fans to basically edit together a bunch of clips from MTV Network-owned content. Its like a mini-Avid to facilitate mash ups. I can’t find it, but trust me, it’s there somewhere.
  • Someone asked why Viacom was suing You Tube. As expected, we got a “no comment”.

Overall, very interesting and insightful presentation.

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