In a slap to the face of YouTube, Viacom said it plans to soon deliver free films and television shows through Joost, the global on-demand broadband television service from the creators of KaZaA and Skype.
After failing to reach a deal with YouTube, Viacom found a partner that was more than eager to satisfy its demands in order to solidify a content delivery partnership.
Founded by Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom, the two Scandinavian entrepreneurs behind KaZaA and Skype, which shook up the music and telephone industry respectively, Joost delivers on-demand advertiser-supported TV programming.
Powered by a secure, efficient, piracy-proof internet platform, Joost enables a high-quality video experience based on premium content, while guaranteeing copyright protection for content owners and creators. Content security was crucial to winning over Viacom’s execs, and actually made Joost a far better choice than YouTube, which has no content security or DRM whatsoever.
“The Joost platform is in essence a closed system,” said Allen Weiner, an analyst at Gartner Inc., a market research firm in Stamford, Conn. “The ability for piracy and content to be stolen is minimal.”
In a chain letter I received from Joost this afternoon, Dirk-Willem van Gulik, CTO of Joost, describes the new deal with Viacom:
Great news from the Joost Content Team. Today we’re announcing a major partnership with Viacom. Which will bring programming and lots of channels from Viacom’s key brands and properties available on Joost on our imminent launch.
MTV will offer popular shows, both past and present, including Laguna Beach, Beavis & Butthead, Real World, Punk’d and My Super Sweet Sixteen,while COMEDY CENTRAL will feature episodes from Stella, CCP’s and Freak Show. Nickelodeon, CMT: Country Music Television, MTV2, Logo, Spike TV, mtvU, and Gametrailers.com will also provide content. VH1′s offerings will include episodes of Flavor of Love, Surreal Life, and I Love New York. BET’s Networks’ offerings will include some of its biggest shows, including Beef, DMX: Soul of a Man, Comic View and recent smash hit American Gangster. Also, Paramount Pictures, Paramount Vantage andParamount Classics will be providing full-length feature films from its catalog of classics and recent releases.
This content isn’t available yet. We’re working hard on shipping, transcoding and feeding the P2P network (and no, despite malicious gossip to the contrary – engineering is not giving Star Trek or Ren&Stimpy top priority) it will all be there for our launch.
Dw. — Dirk-Willem van Gulik, CTO, Joost.
If this does indeed prove to be true, and the content options live up to their promises, I think Joost just may revolutionize TV after all. Up until now the options have been limited to pretty boring stuff, content of a cheap cable TV nature that really weren’t worth watching. But now, if it begins to offer quality programming like “Beavis and Butthead”(love those guys) and full-length feature films, then I’ll definitely be tuning in.
Unfortunately for those that aren’t already BETA testing Joost, it’s still limited to invite only.
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