Ever since Google bought YouTube, it’s been trouncing the competition for online videos.  YT is the de facto standard for posting, linking, viewing, and sharing video.  Not even mighty FaceBook has been able to make much of a dent in YT’s video dominance.

Now, there’s a new guy in town, and the competition could get interesting.  It might also make for some new opportunities in the voiceover business.

Amazon is launching its AMAZON VIDEO DIRECT platform, taking aim at YT’s business of video.

Not exactly a YouTube clone…Amazon Video Direct encourages video content producers to upload their own creations to Amazon’s Prime Video, and earn money, depending on the hours streamed.  The videos are to be made available on every platform Prime Video appears on, like Android, Fire TV, iOS devices, game consoles, etc.

“Creators have several options to monetize their videos, including making them available to rent or own, or they can make them free and ad-supported. The videos can also be packaged together and offered as an add-on subscription to Amazon Prime Video. Add-on subscriptions are available through the Streaming Partners Program, and are intended for larger-scale video providers.” (see article here)

To begin your account, you first must enter bank account and tax information…so right there, you can see they’re pretty serious about the professional aspect of this service.

Compensation?  “Amazon will distribute a share of $1,000,000 per month as a bonus to the Top 100 titles included with Prime through Amazon Video Direct. This bonus—based on global customer engagement—is incremental to revenue earned from hours streamed, rentals, purchases, monthly subscriptions, and ad impressions. All of your titles included with Prime are automatically eligible.” (from their Videodirect website) “For each title, you can choose to earn royalties based on hours streamed by Prime members, a revenue share for rentals, purchases, monthly subscriptions, or ad impressions—or any combination of these options.”

Within this new platform lies yet more opportunities for voice actors.  Videos require narration or actors.  The call will go out probably through agencies, Craigslist, friends, referrals, booking agents, word-of-mouth….OR…through your savvy marketing techniques.

Problem is; this is another of those new frontiers where pricing/compensation is a clean chalkboard.  SAG-AFTRA may have an obscure quote somewhere that kinda covers something like this, but rest-assured, producers will try to get the best voice they can for the least price.

Distribution, usage, length, difficulty, conflicts…all the usual variables, and maybe a few new ones should come to bear on pricing a new Amazon Video Direct product.

Stick to your guns, OK?  Let’s set the standard high at the outset, and we won’t HAVE to claw and scrape for decent wages later.

Wanna know more about Amazon Video Direct? Check out these links:

http://arstechnica.com/business/2016/05/amazon-video-direct-takes-aim-at-the-professional-side-of-youtube/

http://variety.com/2016/digital/news/amazon-video-direct-youtube-creators-1201770058/

http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2016/05/20/amazon-video-direct-inside-amazoncom-incs-efforts.aspx

http://www.siliconbeat.com/2016/05/10/amazon-aims-youtube-prime-video-direct-service/

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160510005558/en/Amazon-Announces-Amazon-Video-Direct-Giving-Video

CourVO

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