If Bob Pittman's judgment today is anywhere near as good as it was in the early 1980s, he may be onto something with a new online video venture.
Pittman founded MTV, which became the favorite for millions of adolescents, teens, and young adults among scores of cable channels. Now he's backing WeShow, which became public this week. WeShow employs teams of people to sift through the massive selection of content available and pick and organize what they deem is the best of online video and present it through 200 channels.
The site exclaims: "WeShow because we know: You haven't got the time or the inclination to wade through poor quality and unorganized videos; you want what you want when you want it -- no badly organized and far-flung video chaos; there's no algorithm for funny, sexy, or interesting; and the English speaking world is not the only place where content is created or enjoyed."
The company hopes to gain popularity by addressing the frustration people feel when they try to find video footage in overwhelmingly large repositories. Although 126 million Americans view video online each month, most aren't satisfied with the online video experience, WeShow said.
The company cited findings from Kelton Research that showed 96% of Americans can't find the videos they want during their initial search. According to Kelton's online survey, conducted in June, more than 60% of Americans are overwhelmed by the volume of online videos; 46% avoid watching online videos because they think searches yield too many results; and 45% only view videos recommended by friends or colleagues.
"WeShow thrives off of the explosion of online video that has until now frustrated a significant portion of consumers on the Web," Marcos Wettreich, CEO and founder of WeShow, said in a statement. "By consolidating the highest quality and most popular content from across the Internet into a simple and personalized view of all the top quality videos from around the world, WeShow is making online video a pure entertainment experience similar to that of television."
WeShow uses real people and technology instead of algorithms to filter video from sites like YouTube, Google Video, MySpace, MetaCafe, and Dailymotion.
WeShow also delivers targeted newsletters and a daily program that highlights what its teams consider the best worldwide video content available. Though the content is available worldwide, it's chosen for and directed toward three different markets: North America, the United Kingdom, and Brazil. In other words, Americans won't be inundated with cricket footage, and Brits won't have to sift through American football to find what they consider to be the real thing.