Yahoo Will Televise The Revolution

    August 25, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

With the help of an open standard called Media RSS, Yahoo makes it easier for small video makers to get noticed.

A little speck doesn’t get noticed unless it flies into your eye, embedding itself painfully on a contact lens while you’re doing 85 on the Capital Beltway and you need to change three lanes to make your exit. At least that’s what I’ve heard.

But when a little spec is a specification, it can have much greater impact. For Yahoo, potentially the next broadcast power according to an excellent Wired magazine article, Media RSS opens the video medium in a way that the earliest TV producers could never have understood.

Yahoo, of course, operates as a web portal, but it functions as an advertising driven entertainment business. For the portal to continue to be a destination, content has to be broad in appeal and maintained by updating it regularly. As users look for more types of content, those updates have to expand the way content gets delivered.

The content has to come from somewhere, and users have to be able to find it. Yahoo’s MRSS standard makes it possible for any video creator to encode that content in a way that Yahoo (and Google and AOL) can find. It’s syndication without making five seasons of a TV series first.

In Sunnyvale, CEO Terry Semel, himself a long-time veteran of Hollywood, seems to get the idea. He poached Lost creator Lloyd Braun from ABC and gave him MGM’s old home in Santa Monica as his playground. That’s the high-end of video entertainment Yahoo can deliver.

On the other end, Yahoo can sift through MRSS videos with its search technology, and will deliver a combined recommendation and tagging system for those videos, according to Wired. When the revolution comes, users will be able to tag videos of it, and recommend particularly entertaining bits to their friends and family.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.