Owned and operated online video platforms gain a foothold among media companies

The New York Times, MiTu and other companies are beginning to have one thing in common: They're investing in or have already built their own online video platforms, eschewing third parties so they can better control the video experience.

"Now we are launch(ing) a new player, which before was using a third party vendor; now we've built our own player. We also are working [to] provide more live events for the Times, where we have Times casts," Maxwell Da Silva, a video architect for NYT, told Streaming Media's Troy Drier. "The strategy for next year, we have some very interesting things in terms of live and OTT device."

Da Silva said the storied newspaper is producing between 30 and 50 videos per day, with a mix of internally-created content and digital agency content. Its platform development efforts at the moment are centering around an app for Google's (NASDAQ: GOOG) Chromecast, with apps for other devices planned.

MiTu, which started two years ago as a multichannel network on YouTube, is also building its own "O&O" (owned and operated platform), CFO Charlie Echeverry told FierceOnlineVideo.

While Echeverry was careful to point out that MiTu is not getting out of YouTube, he said the company has never seen itself as a purely YouTube-based content provider.

"Probably due to our evolution and this MCN chronology, we've never really had the positioning of this sort of YouTube-centric MCN dynamic that pre-existed us. I understand where it came from, this idea of 'gee you're strong on YouTube but you need to get off of YouTube because the economics aren't as strong as they might be.' But it's never been a pain point to the degree that you might have seen in other folks."

MiTu's O&O will allow the company to capture more data on their audience, he said, which in turn will attract more advertisers. "The idea is that we are able to create our own MiTu product experiences out of the web and on mobile through applications and on mobile web. So that we can capture audiences, redirect audiences to those platforms, capture data on those audiences, and be able to build a better suite of insights that we can share with brands and advertisers and other companies that might want to partner with us."

Unlike an online video platform like JW Player, which serves as a third-party provider to enterprises looking to scale their video strategies, MiTu and NYT are more interested in controlling their online video ecosystem as much as possible.

The benefits--having access to all analytics information, controlling how content is delivered--apparently outweigh the costs for both of these entities.

For more:
- see this Streaming Media interview

Special Report: Breaking out of YouTube: JW Player, ILOOK offer alternatives for enterprise online video

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