Web TV gets more eyes

An increasing number of television viewers are turning to the Internet to watch videos, films and TV episodes, according to a new survey conducted by Harris Interactive. In the past year, YouTube has extended its lead as the top site for online videos, with search engines and television networks gaining ground.

Some 65 per cent of the 2,455 U.S. adults surveyed said they have watched a video on YouTube, compared to 42 per cent at the same stage in 2006.

“Viewing videos online seems to inspire a sense of adventure, particularly among younger viewers,” said company VP Joan Barten Kline.

More than one-third of viewers overall and half of those 18 to 24 said there is something they really enjoy about discovering a cool video online. “They seem to take particular pride in their finds online and share them with friends,” Barten Kline added.

More than 42 per cent of YouTube viewers said they visit the site frequently, up from 33 per cent last year.

Apart from YouTube, which most people favoured because they felt it had almost every video they could find, 43 per cent said they have watched a video on a TV network Web site, followed by 35 per cent on news sites and less than 30 per cent on search engines such as Yahoo and Google.

Social networks such as MySpace and Facebook as well as music site iTunes also had a lower share of online viewers.

Online viewers said they would watch more TV episodes and full-length movies if more were available. There was less interest in viewing more amateur or user-generated videos, news and sports, according to the survey.

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