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Last Updated: Saturday, 27 January 2007, 16:26 GMT
YouTubers to get ad money share
By Tim Weber
Business editor, BBC News website, Davos

YouTube video
More clicks will soon mean more money for YouTube contributors
People who upload their own films to video-sharing website YouTube will soon get a share of the ad revenue.

YouTube founder Chad Hurley confirmed to the BBC that his team was working on a revenue-sharing mechanism that would "reward creativity".

The system would be rolled out in a couple of months, he said, and use a mixture of adverts, including short clips shown ahead of the actual film.

YouTube has more than 70m users a month and was recently bought by Google.

The offer applies only to people who own the full copyright of the videos that they are uploading to the YouTube website.

YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen
Founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen made $1.65bn with YouTube

The company, which Google bought in November last year for $1.65bn, was currently working on "audio fingerprinting" technologies to identify copyrighted material, Mr Hurley said in a session on social networking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Speaking to the BBC after the session, he declined to give further details, saying that YouTube was still working out the technology and processes involved - both for the rewards system and the video clip advertising system.

But he confirmed that the various features would be rolled out one by one over the next few months.

"There won't be one big release," he said.

The audience of the YouTube website will not have to put up with overly long "pre-roll" adverts. Mr Hurley said a clip of three seconds length was one of the options, although the details had not been worked out yet.

Other video sharing sites such as Revver already split advertising revenues with users uploading original content, but only YouTube has managed to attract an audience measuring in the tens of millions.

Mr Hurley said the fact that YouTube had not had a revenue sharing model was one of the reasons for its success, as that had allowed the website to focus on its key strength, making it easy to share videos with others.

YouTube has repeatedly clashed with film studios and music publishers over copyrighted material that has been uploaded to the website.

The company says that it is quick to remove copyrighted material on the site that has been brought to its attention.

Since the takeover by Google, YouTube has also negotiated a string of deals with large media groups, which also involve some revenue sharing.

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