Catching The Drift: Online Video Views Up Almost 50% Over A Year Ago

The new comScore Video Metrix report for February comes out just as the IAB touts that the Internet advertising reached $42.8 billion in 2013, which is more than was been spent on television, for the first time.  

But let’s be clear about it. Of that amount, online video only accounted for $2.8 billion, a sizable 19% over the year before, and counted within the $12.8 billion spent in online display advertising, which was up 30%

Those are great numbers, still, that seems to suggest an obvious trend. Indeed, television’s overseers and other content makers seem to be tripping all over themselves to get more solidly positioned for an online future.

Yesterday, Maker Studio officially reaffirmed the Disney’s $550 million bid for the YouTube content giant, even though at the last minute, or perhaps even beyond it, Maker was offered $1.1 billion by Relativity Media. Yahoo is jumping into the content-making biz and even Microsoft—even Microsoft!—wants to entertain us online.



The new comScore numbers show just how easily Americans have slipped into watching online — and watching a lot.

In February, 182.4 million Americans watched 49.2 billion videos and 24.6 billion ads. But the eye-popping figures come comparing that to a year ago. The number of videos viewed is up 49.1%.  Video ad views went up an astonishing 148.5%, according to ClickZ, which compared the numbers and headlined its story, “Americans Spent Almost 18 Hours In February Watching Videos.”

It just happened.

 Without any trumpets blaring, consumers now reflexively go to online video for everything. Do you remember—maybe?—the mid-'90s, when advertisers first began putting their URLs at the bottom of their TV ads. It was a sign of with-it-ness.

But compare that to today. You can watch something as age-undesirable as “The CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” and discover, often more than once in each broadcast, an invitation to go online to watch more about top stories.

And with natural, good developments like that comes the other kinds of drifts. It was funny/sad for me read on Monday morning that Michael Isikoff, a veteran NBC News investigative reporter who had reported really big stories, had packed up his magnifying glass and said goodbye the Friday before.

He was gracious in his departure, though he knew it was time to go, telling the Times: “It was increasingly clear they [NBC] were moving in directions in which there were going to be fewer and fewer opportunities for my work.”  

On Monday afternoon, I remembered that quote when I got the e-mail from the NBCUniversal News Group announcing “15 Seconds To Truth.”

It’s proclaimed as “a new, co-produced 15-second daily video series” that will “dig into a big headline each day to uncover a truth hidden behind the day’s conventional wisdom and spin” designed to be seen on mobile devices. Apparently, uncovering more than one hidden truth in 15 seconds would have been a real stretch. They are not miracle workers over there, you know.

Honestly, this sounds like a parody. And that co-produced part! Perfect!

In fact, “15 Seconds” is a project done between NBC and NowThisNews, which partnered with the network news purveyor a while back to capture the essential whatever of short-form videos. The first one is here, and it fairly rips the lid off Italy’s economic woes, I think it’s fair to say. It can be found on MSNBC, Facebook and Twitter. It’s packed with information and neat riot scenes.     

“MSNBC viewers want honest and informed perspectives that explore the often overlooked angles of important stories,” said Phil Griffin, president of MSNBC, in a canned quote.

But take what you can get.

4 comments about "Catching The Drift: Online Video Views Up Almost 50% Over A Year Ago ".
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  1. christopher collins from Cqs Business Solutions, April 15, 2014 at 5:09 p.m.

    To some this may be a surprise and to others it's just like "You needed comScore to tell you that?"

  2. John Grono from GAP Research, April 20, 2014 at 1:40 a.m.

    To provide some perspective around how big is BIG. 182.4m people watched 49.2b videos. That is an average of 270 videos per person per month (around 10 a day). That accounted for 18 hours or 1080 minutes. So the average video is now around 4 minutes. Or around 1/15th of a TV drama, 1/30th of a TV movie or 1/7th of a TV comedy. Impressive amount ... but still a LONG way to go.

  3. Pamela Horovitz from Internet Video Archive, April 23, 2014 at 4:20 p.m.

    "neat riot scenes"?

  4. pj bednarski from, April 23, 2014 at 4:36 p.m.

    I thought the coverage was juvenile and superficial and that my language should reflect that. If you were offended, I'm sorry. I meant it to be sarcastic.

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