We were out at the Yahoo! headquarters in Sunnyvale, Ca. last month and caught up with our old pal Patrick Houston who heads up Yahoo! Tech

We wanted to find out his strategy for the new Yahoo! channel.  He told us about progress with "Hook Me Up" — a new series of offbeat "how to" video clips for consumers dealing with issues like buying a computer and digitizing music. 

A few months back, Yahoo! retained producer Michael Davies of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" and "Wife Swap" fame to produce the series.   

The clips are well produced — yet funky and offbeat.  We think it’s a pretty good mix.  It will be interesting to see how this develops. 

Big News From Google and Viacom Today

We read with great interest in today’s New York Times and Wall Street Journal about a new plan for Google Video to syndicate video clips from Viacom’s MTV’s "Laguna Beach" and "SpongeBob SquarePants" on various Web sites.  Google essentially places these clips on other sites with advertisement — a 15 second spot runs before the clip is seen. The clips will be short, not more than 4 minutes long.

This is huge:  It essentially means that Google is now a television syndicator.  Meaning, it’s taking the content of a producer, placing it on various Web sites with advertising and splitting the ad revenue with the producer — Viacom in this case.

Revver and Brightcove are also in this space and are implementing this sort of syndication agreement, although terms and specifics are different.   

What does all this mean to us vloggers and assorted "Long Tail" video producers?  It means that if we produce good content that people want to see, they will watch a 15 second "pre-roll" before seeing our work.  We can make money from advertising.  Believe it!

— Andy Plesser

News Update: Softbank funds Huffington Post with $5 million, NY Post.  Congrats!

More Big News From Google at 4:30 PM EDT — Major Deal with MySpace for Search

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