Earlier today, YouTube announced via a blogpost that it will be enhancing its YouTube partner program. Specifically, the new program will provide partners with additional means to earn money, to the extent that some select partners will now be able to charge subscription fees for certain channels.
Today, there are more than 1 million channels generating revenue on YouTube, and one of the most frequent requests we hear from these creators behind them is for more flexibility in monetizing and distributing content. We’ve been working on that and wanted to fill you in on what to expect.Starting today, we’re launching a pilot program for a small group of partners that will offer paid channels on YouTube with subscription fees starting at $0.99 per month. Every channel has a 14-day free trial, and many offer discounted yearly rates. For example, Sesame Street will be offering full episodes on their paid channel when it launches. And UFC fans can see classic fights, like a full version of their first event from UFC’s new channel.
All in all, it's an interesting move from YouTube as the Google property continues to look for ways to monetize one of the world's more popular sites. If there's one thing the success of iTunes has shown us, it's that people are willing to pay for quality content made easily accessible.
It's worth noting, though, that after perusing some of the channels that already offer paid subscriptions, not all of them offer it for the low price of $0.99. On the contrary, I noted quite a few were being offered at $4.99 a month.
YouTube notes that it will be making its paid channel program available to even more qualifying partners in the coming weeks.