Yahoo Continues To Be Thorn In YouTube’s Side As WWE Declines Pay Channel Initiative


When media company Yahoo tossed their hat into the digital video ring, many saw it as yet another ill-fated attempt to end YouTube’s reign. But, with recent developments including Yahoo’s alleged interest in purchasing Hulu and obtaining a majority stake in video-sharing site Dailymotion, the internet company may stand a chance against the collective might of Google-owned YouTube.

Yahoo, as it turns out, is proving to be much more of a thorn in Google’s side than we may have previously thought. Last week, Yahoo ironed out agreements that would give the company exclusive streaming rights to “Saturday Night Live,” and more importantly, a full slate of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) programming.

Perhaps due to Yahoo’s acquisition, Variety recently reported that WWE has chosen to opt out of YouTube’s upcoming pay-channel initiative. For the time being, WWE will continue to generate revenue solely through ads on YouTube.

Although compared to YouTube’s massive roster of entertainment providers this may seem like a minor inconvenience, looking at demographic statistics tells a different story.

Currently, the 18-34 age bracket makes up 67 percent of YouTube viewers, and 58 percent of the video site’s total viewers are men. Switching to WWE, 75 percent of their audience is over the age of 21 and represent a 66 percent male demographic.

Yahoo is tapping into a massive chunk of YouTube’s audience by snatching exclusive rights to WWE content. With both entertainment providers’ majority demographics syncing up in terms of audience and gender, YouTube could arguably lose a sizeable portion of their key audience.

In addition, if Yahoo does officially go through with purchasing a large segment of Dailymotion — a serious contender in the digital video space — it could spell trouble for YouTube.


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