Posted by Tom Foremski - April 12, 2007
Jen Cooper says she knows how to deal with content licensing, "That's what I used to do at Yahoo, and it's an advantage that we have at MixerCast."
MixerCast is coming out of private beta on Monday April 16--with a library of premium video, music and photography licensed from major content owners. It is all available to users to mashup and broadcast anyway they choose--all royalty-free.
Ms Cooper spent five years at Yahoo as executive director of business development with a "focus on digital video and content acquisition." Now she is using that experience to obtain licenses for content from top content owners such as ABC and National Geographic.
MixerCast users can combine the licensed content with any other media, to create a type of online "many-media micro-broadcast channel."
MixerCast users use online tools and templates to bring in Flickr or Photobucket photos, videos, TV news segments, TV advertisements, and add their own content, YouTube videos, and even a live webcam stream.
It can be shared with just a few friends or published to anyone on the Internet. It is part TV show, part-slideshow, part PowerPoint.
When Mashups Go Bad
But won't the MSM content owners, advertisers, etc, be worried about people mixing up their brands, their content, in unusual and inappropriate ways?
"People will do that anyway, there is no way to stop that. It is far better to let people have access to your content because that's what produces hypersyndication," says Ms. Cooper.
Hypersyndication is a concept that Ms Cooper says is a key feature of MixerCast: it is the viral distribution of content through many users generating their own content mashups.
The idea is to give users access to lots of content, royalty-free, to remix as they choose. The reward is dramatically broader distribution--hypersyndication of content.
Attach an advertising link to videos or other content, and you get wider advertising reach. It's potentially a virtuous cycle and worth exploring as a possible new business model for content producers.
And the remixers of that content, the MixerCast users, can benefit too, potentially sharing in the distribution revenues.
So far, Ms Cooper has negotiated licensing deals that include the following companies:
MixerCast offers one-click publishing of user's mixercasts to self-publishing sites such as:
I asked Ms Cooper about the possibility that MySpace.com might cut off outside services--this was before Wednesday's MySpace ban on Photobucket videos. She didn't expect a problem because there are many other places to publish content, and MixerCast is better able to partner with online companies.
Two Top Flash Experts
Ms Cooper is keen to point out that MixerCast has two of the top experts in Adobe Flash--out of only seven worldwide. Adobe's aggressive push to create a leading web development platform around Flash could enable MixerCast to gain an edge over competitors.
There are many Web 2.0 companies emerging that provide some, even many of the features of MixerCast. The potential advantage, and its distinction, is that the company has a library of legal premium content that is "mashupable" and likely to evade Viacom/YouTube type problems.
It remains to be seen If content owners will be able to stomach some of the less appealing mashups that will inevitably arise, and recognize the rewards of MixerCast's hypersyndication services.
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MySpace Is Blocking Photobucket Videos
MySpace has decided to block Photobucket videos and remixes from the popular social networking site. The decision affects any video hosted through Photobucket whether it’s in a user’s profile, blog or comments section on MySpace.
This isn’t the first time MySpace has flipped the switch on Photobucket content. Back in January of this year Photobucket users were similarly blocked, though MySpace later claimed it was just trying to filter for security issues and restored the videos.