Responding to requests for more flexibility in monetising and distributing content, the video-sharing site is launching a pilot programme for a small group of partners that will offer paid channels on YouTube with subscription fees starting at $0.99 per month. Every channel has a 14-day free trial, and many offer discounted yearly rates. For example, Sesame Street will be offering full episodes on its paid channel when it launches. And UFC fans can see classic fights, such as a full version of their first event from UFC’s new channel.
“Once you subscribe from a computer, you’ll be able to watch paid channels on your computer, phone, tablet and TV, and soon you’ll be able to subscribe to them from more devices,” the YouTube team wrote in a blog.
“This is just the beginning. We’ll be rolling paid channels out more broadly in the coming weeks as a self-service feature for qualifying partners. And as new channels appear, we’ll be making sure you can discover them, just as we’ve been helping you find and subscribe to all the channels you love across YouTube,” it continued.
It noted that just as the partner programme empowered creators to take their channels to the next level, YouTube looked forward to seeing how “this great community of creators” moved ahead with a new way to reach the fan communities that made their channels a hit. “You’ll be hearing more from us, and them, as we get creator and user feedback and build out this exciting offering,” it advised.