Video Killed the Radio Star

Serious Question: Is There Anything You’d Pay to Watch on YouTube?

You REALLY going to subscribe to that?
Worth the money?

Worth the money?

Is there anything on YouTube that you just couldn’t live without? Cat videos are great and all, but this Betabeat reporter can’t even be bothered to cough up the cash for Hulu Plus. And yet it seems the video platform is just bound and determined to make subscriptions happen: Ad Age reports that after much teasing, YouTube is asking channel producers (it’s unclear which ones) to apply to create paid channels.

Sources tell Ad Age that the first paid channels will cost between $1 and $5, and YouTube is also looking at ways to charge for “content libraries and access to live events, a la pay-per-view, as well as self-help or financial advice shows.” But would a personal finance guru sign off on your paying $1 a month for YouTube videos? That’s what they call a conundrum, friends.

The corporate overlords at Google offered Ad Age a statement that’s vague as hell but not exactly a denial:

“We have long maintained that different content requires different types of payment models,” a Google spokesman said, in a statement. ‘The important thing is that, regardless of the model, our creators succeed on the platform. There are a lot of our content creators that think they would benefit from subscriptions, so we’re looking at that.”

We assume they added (off the record, of course), “Why? Would you pay for a Youtube channel? How much would you pay? What content would you prefer? Do you have $5 on you right now? We take quarters.”

Follow Kelly Faircloth on Twitter or via RSS. kfaircloth@observer.com