Viacom Bails Out on Internet Video Plan

Dec 20, 2006  •  Post A Comment

Viacom has backed out of plans by major media companies to create an online video consortium for television clips that would threaten YouTube. Executives at the media giant said Wednesday that Viacom may license material to such a consortium but won’t be a founding member, according to Advertising Age.

Viacom’s early exit from the proposed venture represents yet another blow to the networks’ YouTube copycat project. Disney has said it doesn’t plan to participate in any sort of joint venture and has demonstrated that consumers will already watch its TV shows on ABC.com.

Visitors to ABC.com started episodes of ABC shows more than 24 million times in the first two months following the September relaunch of its video player. Viacom is also positioned well online already with its twin Web video destinations iFilm and Atom Entertainment.

The remaining players in the possible venture now are NBC Universal and News. Corp. Analysts and online video experts have contended since the idea of the rival site was first floated that it would not materialize. Now, with the exit of Viacom the venture seems even less likely.

(Editor: Liff)