YouTube paid subscriptions now live, starting at 99 cents per month

We knew it was in the works and today marks launch day for YouTube’s paid subscription pilot program. Users were worried that their favorite YouTube channels would be switching to the paid model, but from the looks of the pilot channels, there isn’t too much worry about that. Instead, the paid subscription channels are dominated by names you wouldn’t expect to see (legally) on YouTube, like Sesame Street.

The current lineup of channels in the pilot program fall mostly into a few major categories. Of the 53 pilot channels, most seem to be either children’s programming (Jim Henson’s Family TV, National Geographic Kids, DHX Junior/Kids, Franklin), or sports/fitness (TNA Impact Wrestling, UFC Select, PGA Academy, Primezone Sports with Deion Sanders, iAmplify, Cars TV). The rest are a smattering of genre channels covering documentaries, comedy, Spanish language, LGBT, and even a woodworking channel.
Every channel has a 14-day free trial, and afterwards the channels either offer a subscription fee starting at 99 cents per month, or purchases. For example, you can subscribe to Jim Henson’s Family TV for $2.99 per month or $24.99 per year (which includes Fraggle Rock, but not Sesame Street); or, you can buy individual episodes of Sesame Street ($1.99 for SD, $2.99 for HD) or purchase full seasons ($17.99/$27.99).
YouTube plans to continue rolling out more subscription channels with partners that will be adding more “TV-like” series.
Many people get angry at the idea of paid channels on YouTube, but we’ve defended the idea before, and we’ll continue to do it. As you can see with the pilot program, paid subscriptions are bringing in big name content creators like Jim Henson productions, a channel presented by Deion Sanders, and HDNet. Big names like this are only a good thing for YouTube. They won’t be crowding out the ad-supported channels, just adding a new tier of premium content.
As we’ve said many many times before, it’s just like online news. Only the top 5% of the most popular content on YouTube will be able to switch to paid subscriptions and end up making more money than with ad revenue. Just like only news sources at the very top, like NYT and WSJ, can put up a paywall and make it work. Everyone else has to stick with ad support.

Introducing the YouTube Trends Map!

Are teens in the South watching the same videos as middle-aged folks in New England? Now with the YouTube Trends Map (youtube.com/trendsmap), you can see today’s most popular videos in major markets across the U.S. You can also see what’s popular with women or men, as well as by different age groups.

YouTube Trends Map

The Trends Map is the result of all the great feedback y you’ve given us from the Trends Dashboard, as we keep working to help you find great videos and channels on YouTube. For now, the Trends Map is only available for the U.S., but stay tuned for updates.

Check out the Trends Map FAQ for any questions, and happy trend-tracking!

Happy 19th Birthday, Justin Bieber!

Justin Bieber In Concert

Justin Bieber, Shirtless

Justin Bieber celebrates his 19th birthday today. We’ll wait for the squealing to calm down before we continue..

Justin Bieber had a huge year! From the Victoria’s Secret Fashion show to new digs and more hit singles, this star has a lot of celebrating to do!

He may not be spending his big day with Selena Gomez, but his success will sure keep him company.

While we all pondered whether Selena Gomez would be moping around thinking about her ex Justin Bieber, who kick-started his 19th birthday celebration a night early in London, the actress was seen without a care in the world as she enjoyed a sunny afternoon in Los Angeles.

Justin Bieber Gets Shirtless after performing at his Birmingham concert Before Celebrating His Birthday~>

Let’s take a look at his stand-out moments as he moves forward to the last of his teen years!

Justin Bieber’s ’Believe’ Album

The Biebs released his third studio album, Believe, on June 19, 2012. The album was praised for being a departure from his usual teen pop sounds due to the incorporation of more dance-pop and R&B genres. Believe debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. Congrats Justin! He also got a little more love from his native people this time around when the album’s debut single, Boyfriend,” reached the top spot on the Canadian Hot 100. “Bieber Fever” can’t be stopped!

Justin Bieber’s New Mansion

It’s only a matter of time before a huge star like Justin invests in a hot new piece of real-estate. In May 2012 the “Baby” singer purchased a 10,000 square foot Mansion in Calabasas, California. The pad cost him a whopping $6.5 million! His new digs–equipped with  a movie theater with stadium seating, a wet bar and a wine cellar, a large pool and sizable guest house.

Justin’s Sold-Out ‘Believe’ Tour

Justin is not slowing down anytime soon! He’s in the midst of his Believe Tour, currently preparing to jet off to Europe and Africa.

Lebanese Beliebers 

Bieber fans are called Beliebers. “Belieber” was declared one of the best new words of 2010. The early Bieber fanbase developed on YouTube, and predated the release of Bieber’s first album.

Fans viewed his videos more than 2 billion times on YouTube, with Bieber becoming the first person to reach that number on the site.

Three Years ago, Lebanese Beliebers started making videos, fan pics and trends on Twitter, for instance the hashtag “#LebaneseBeliebersExist” trended Worldwide two days ago !

They’re doing their best trying to bring Justin to Lebanon. So all the luck Lebanese Beliebers!