YouTube Vice President Robert Kyncl told reporters Wednesday that it is “incredibly important” that subscriptions should be available to create “additional revenue streams” for content creators, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Looking for additional revenue streams is important for YouTube as the company recently reached an average of 1 billion unique users each month.
Kyncl acknowledges that the challenges facing YouTube in offering subscriptions is trying to convince viewers to pay for content. He said there will be “a lot of experimentation” and added that “over time, a lot of people will figure it out.”
Speculation about subscriptions on YouTube is nothing new. Last year, Kyncl spoke at the Abu Dhabi Media Summit about offering a subscription option to all its channels. The magazine AdAge also reported that YouTubers could charge viewers between $1 to $5 a month when the subscription model is implemented. Android Police reported earlier this year that a code from the latest YouTube Android app update suggested a subscription service in the works.
As far as who will be the first to charge subscriptions, NMR reported from an undisclosed source this week that Machinima is rumored to be the first multi-channel network to do so. Adding to the YouTube subscription hype are “Alien” director Ridley Scott’s upcoming short sci-fi films for Machinima and recent high-profile channel launches by “The X Factor” judge Simon Cowell and British comedian Ricky Gervais.
YouTube will probably need to rely on big names like Machinima, Simon Cowell and Ricky Gervais to convince people to subscribe in order for the model to work.