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Can Anyone Stop the Online Video Juggernaut?

Senior executives at major U.S. broadcast television networks acknowledge that the shift to on-demand video viewing will disrupt their legacy status quo. They're also concerned that a recently redesigned Hulu offering may further accelerate the shift away from linear programming, and thereby reduce their video advertiser revenues.

Should they be worried about the adoption of online video? Should they join the broadband service providers in lobbying the federal government to support broadband bandwidth caps -- in an attempt to curtail any further erosion of their legacy business model? Can they halt this transformation, without it erupting into a battle of the TV traditionalists vs. the digital media titans?

comScore released data showing that more than 184 million U.S. Internet users watched 36.9 billion online content videos in July, while video advertising views totaled 9.6 billion.

Google Sites, driven primarily by video viewing at YouTube.com, ranked as the top online video content property in July with 157 million unique viewers, followed by Facebook.com with 53 million, Yahoo! Sites with 48.7 million, VEVO with 44.8 million and Microsoft Sites with 42.7 million.

Nearly 36.9 billion video content views occurred during the month, with Google Sites generating the highest number at 19.6 billion, followed by AOL, Inc. with 665 million. Google Sites had the highest average engagement among the top ten properties.

Americans viewed 9.6 billion video advertisements in July, with each of the top 4 video ad properties delivering more than 1-billion video ads. Google Sites ranked first with 1.5 billion ads, followed by Hulu with 1.2 billion, Adap.tv with 1.1 billion, SpotXchange Video Ad Marketplace with 1 billion and TubeMogul Video Ad Platform with 830 million.

Time spent watching video ads totaled 3.9 billion minutes, with Adap.tv delivering the highest duration of video ads at 627 million minutes. Video ads reached 52 percent of the total U.S. population an average of 61 times during the month. Hulu delivered the highest frequency of video ads to its viewers with an average of 46, while ESPN delivered an average of 26 ads per viewer.

The July 2012 YouTube partner data revealed that video music channel VEVO (43.9 million viewers) maintained the top position in the ranking. Gaming channel Machinima captured the #2 spot for the first time in July with 25.3 million viewers, followed by Warner Music with 24.9 million and Maker Studios with 20.4 million.

Among the top 10 YouTube partners, Machinima demonstrated the highest engagement (83 minutes per viewer) followed by Maker Studios (45 minutes per viewer). VEVO streamed the greatest number of videos (571 million), followed by Machinima (564 million).

Other notable findings from July 2012 study include:
  • 85.5 percent of the U.S. Internet audience viewed online video.
  • The duration of the average online content video was 6.7 minutes, while the average online video ad was 0.4 minutes.
  • Video ads accounted for 20.7 percent of all videos viewed and 1.6 percent of all minutes spent viewing video online.

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