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Squeezing the tube

YouTube subscriptions?In the last few days it has been rumoured that Youtube will soon start charging a subscription fee for users to access content on some of their main specialist channels. According to a financial times report, fees could start from £1.28 a month and may apply on up to 50 channels. 

The subscription service will mean users can access exclusive content and may mean those videos are free from advertising. 

It will also mean that Youtube can add a second revenue stream to their model and that big content providers may look to publishing their content on Youtube now instead or in addition to other streaming services like Netflix.  

Youtube has long been a free service and started out a a user generated content site but in the last few years there has been a move away from this to professionally produced content. In fact, every one of Ad Ages top 100 brands has now advertised on Youtube according to a report in the Financial times. 

Is this a good move? Well we are all used to getting 'free' content from Youtube so it's bound to irk some , however as our TV viewing habits are changing and more and more people are watching programmes online, it may be a price worth paying to watch that latest series of Mad Men. 

The move could be the latest in the trend toward publishers charging for online content. This may make watching traditional TV look more attractive but no doubt it will raise the bar in terms of the quality of the videos we expect to see online.