Feeds

Sony snaps Grouper shut, gives Crackle a pop

Drops video sharing biz model, goes in search of 'emerging talent'

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Sony Pictures is challenging YouTube's dominance of the user-generated content market by turning its online acquisition Grouper into a mini studio.

From today Grouper, which was acquired by Sony Pictures for $65m last August, will now be known as Crackle.

And, in a marked change to its original video sharing business model, the website's main function will be to pull in the best new online video talent.

Crackle is offering up what it described as a "streaming entertainment network" that will see wannabe filmmakers go head-to-head in contests in the hope of bagging development and distribution deals with Sony.

The site will also carry branded channels where user generated content in different genres will be uploaded and judged by a panel of "editors", entertainment partners, and other users.

Winners will get the chance to collaborate with Sony execs and creators before seeing their work distributed to a wider audience via the likes of MySpace, Facebook, and AOL, as well as on the TV screen via Sony platforms.

It said other initiatives would include lining up pitch meetings with Columbia Pictures for short filmmakers, and stand-up new comers could get the chance to perform at Improv comedy clubs.

Crackle founder and co-president Josh Felsher said: "We are very focused on liberating the next generation creator-writer from YouTube; we offer funding, syndication, promotion and a pathway to Hollywood despite cynicism."

Grouper had previously served as a peer-to-peer network offering a web-based video sharing service.

Although the new business model adopted by Crackle isn't exactly a new one - Google Video, for example, already offers similar cash incentives - Felsher said the firm hopes the Sony brand will help it push its service to the front of the pack. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.