“Fox’s new shows are topping Neilsen ratings, but that’s no match for YouTube’s power to distribute mass amounts of legacy content to audiences unwilling to leave the YouTube website — or unaware that they can,” said Heather Dougherty of Hitwise.
“Content used to be king, but now distribution is the new sheriff in town,” said Alan Luftanza, who authored a book about YouTube. “The data show that people indeed enjoy moving-picture television shows like “House,” but would rather stick with market leader, YouTube, and watch shows that often lasted well into their 3rd season.”
Luftanza, who worked with Dougherty to conduct the analysis based on March 15 through April 15 viewing habits, observed that Neilsen Ratings reported 12 to 22 people, on average, watched the top 10 television shows. Contrast that to He-Man’s season 1, episode 13 “Life Father, Like Daughter,” which has 2,283 views.”Twelve people is not a lot,” said Luftanza. “I once had more friends than that.”
The ratings show that YouTube’s brand, and loyal audiences, are driving more media consumption than fresh shows by such networks as CBS, NBC, MTV9, and ABC. “It’s so much easier to watch the five episodes of “My Mother the Car” on YouTube instead of digging out the lazer disk or beta tapes from the back of my closet.” said Terry Zipster (Zipster08).”And believe me, I don’t want to be wrestling through my closet since I’m not sure what I might find.”
Michael “Tony Robbins” Buckley (WhatTheBuckShow), left his job as a janitor to host a full-time show on YouTube, and he isn’t surprised. “YouTube is really about two things: the community, and watching retro classics like “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure: Animated Series.” Buckley added, “I have unwavering confidence in YouTube’s ability to maintain it’s leadership in online-video viewing, and I have sexual feelings for women.”
Daisy Whitney, a woman and industry analyst, predicted this phonemon in her December 2008 “New Media Minute” show titled “2009 Predictions.” Whitney said she expected to see Hulu in 2009 assemble the latest television shows, but that YouTube’s sheer mass of loyal viewers would be more important than content to attracting audiences.
“If I had to bet between Desperate Housewives on television and Hulu versus Alf on YouTube, I’d pick the latter any day,” said Whitney, with both palms open to indicate sincerity. “Let’s face it- the audience has chosen YouTube, and Alf’s biting sarcasm is due for a comeback.”