More TV Viewers Watching Online Videos

    December 20, 2007

More television viewers are going online to watch videos, films and TV episodes according to a new poll from Harris Interactive.

YouTube has expanded its lead as a site for online video viewing, while search engines and TV network sites are holding their own. Online video viewership has increased overall in the past year (81% versus 74%). Approximately 65 percent of the 2,455 U.S. adults surveyed say they have watched a video on YouTube, compared to 42 percent during the same time last year.

Forty-two percent of YouTube viewers say they visit the site frequently, up from 33 percent last year. On par with last year’s results, over two in five have watched videos on a TV network site (43% vs.41%). Online viewing on TV network and news sites remains consistent across age groups ranging from 18 to 64.

Interest in online video viewing is becoming common among older age groups and is pervasive with the under 30 set. "Viewing videos online seems to inspire a sense of adventure, particularly among younger viewers," says Joan Barten Kline, Vice President of the Harris Interactive Media & Entertainment Practice. "They seem to take particular pride in their ‘finds’ online and share them with friends."

More than one-third of viewers overall and half of those 18 to 24 say "there is something they really enjoy about discovering a cool video online" and that "they discuss the videos they see online with their friends."

Thirty percent said they would be likely to watch "a lot more" TV episodes and/or full-length movies (28%) if more were available online. Fewer expressed interest for watching "a lot more" user-generated videos (8%), news (14%) or sports videos (13%) if more of them were made available online.

Sixteen percent of YouTube users said they had noticed it had been more difficult to find videos they were looking for on the site due to copyright restrictions. Still close to half (49%) said the best thing about YouTube is that you can find almost any video you might be looking for on the site.