Blip.tv was founded six years ago in May 2005, by a group of five friends who love web series, and has grown to become one of the Internet’s largest independently owned and operated video properties. CEO and founder Mike Hudack says that what they've doing all along is building the next the generation television network. Since it's founding, New York City-based blip.tv has cultivated some the world’s top web series producers, advertisers and video distribution platforms with the mission of making original series both profitable and scalable. This past week, blip.tv relaunched its new blip.tv destination site to better curate and promote the best original web series on the site and make them more discoverable. Additionally, blip.tv announced that it's reached more than three billion views to date, and on pace to reach one billion views per quarter.
I caught up with Hudack at NewTeevee Live 2010, where he discussed the founding of the company, its vision and where he sees it going. Hudack says the world has fundamentally changed since the early days of NBC in the 1940s, which was originally founded to sell TVs, and that we've gone from an economy of scarcity where you can only put out one show at a time, to a world where you can put out any number of shows. He attributes this to the less expensive production costs, which has given rise to a new generation of stars and producers.
"There are more independent show producers today than there have ever been in history," says Hudack, "and that will keep happening, and our job is to make those shows sustainable and profitable over the long term, and scalable – help people go from 10,000 people watching to a 100,000, to a million people, and some people really make money."Thousands of shows are using the platform and distribute to most of the video Internet, including YouTube, AOL, MSN, iTunes, and to the TV set through partnerships with Roku, Google TV, Boxee, Verizon FiOS, TiVo, Sony TVs and others. Blip.tv works with advertisers to associate brands with the targeted audiences of web series and shares all advertising revenue with producers on a 50/50 basis. Top show producers on blip.tv have made over $500,000 in revenue in 2010, with largest check paid out to a producer at $143,000 in Q3 2010.
Some of Hudack's favorite web shows include, The Philip DeFranco Show, Old Jews Telling Jokes, Big Book of Lies and Status Kill, all of which he says are some of the best examples of what you can with web television today. His advise to anyone interested in producing a web show is to pick something that you are fanatical about, and that the best shows are the ones people make for themselves.
"The other thing that's so important is need to pick white space," suggests Hudack, "so if you make another police procedural drama people are going to say, "oh, I can watch CSI, NCIS, Law & Order", you name it. But if you make a show for an audience that is not being served well by the traditional entertainment system and it's something you're passionate about – you will be successful, I promise. You gotta work hard too."
"The Internet is a very different place than television," Hudack says, "and we are literally building a television network for the Internet, instead of a television network for television."
Blip.tv is the place to discover the best in original Web series from both professional and up-and-coming producers. It gives viewers free access to a wide variety of dramas and comedies, series about sports, videogames, food, fashion and more, and makes it easy to find what you want when you want it. The company currently distributes series to iTunes, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, roku, Verizon FiOS, TiVo, Sony TVs and elsewhere. Blip.tv hosts more than 300 million video views per month and shares all advertising revenue with producers on a 50/50 basis. Please visit http://blip.tv for more information and follow blip.tv (bliptv) on Twitter.
About Mike Hudack
Mike Hudack is a co-founder of blip.tv and serves as the company's president and CEO. He is responsible for blip.tv's overall business strategy, focusing in particular on community relations along with syndication, distribution and advertising partnerships. Prior to blip.tv, Mike worked as a developer and administrator for the National Hockey League, where he managed the team responsible for one of the biggest IT projects in the history of the League — consolidating and re-developing the NHL's internal applications, which serve hundreds of employees using dozens of technologies. Mike also developed the content management system for NHL.com and redesigned the software used to bring scores and statistics from dozens of simultaneous hockey games to fans in real-time.
Mike has spoken at SXSW, Streaming Media West, Beyond Broadcast, the Open Media Developers Summit, TelcoTV and dozens of other conferences and has served as a guest lecturer at NYU and elsewhere as an expert on video, blogging and citizen journalism. He has created and maintained more than a half dozen independent media projects, including warstories:CC, warblogs:CC and the Index of Evil. His independent projects have been covered by the Washington Post, USA Today, the PBS Newshour, NPR and Forbes, among others. Follow Mike Hudack (mhudack) on Twitter
- Blip.tv Launches New Website and Surpasses 3 Billion Video Views at blip.tv press site
- The New Blip.tv | blip on blip on blip.tv
- Building the place to discover the best in original web series - the blip.tv blog
- Blip.tv Reintroduces Itself as a Curated Video Site - NYTimes.com
- With 1 Billion Views Per Quarter, Blip.tv Becomes A Video Destination (Interview)
- Blip.tv Builds a Hulu for Original Web Series | Digital - Advertising Age
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