YouTube Red will expand its subscription service to as many as 100 countries in the next year, according to YouTube chief executive Susan Wojcicki .
Speaking at Recode’s Code Media conference in Huntington Beach, Calif., Wojcicki said that YouTube will be looking to expand its Red service “to many more countries”.
The subscription service first launched in October 2015 as a $9.99 subscription for ad-free viewing and was designed as a replacement to Google Music Key to give users a simple way to watch or listen to YouTube video and Play Music — as a tier on existing YouTube and Google accounts.
The company said it would split subscription revenue with rights holders of content people listen to or see on the service. And the company has signed on independent creators, record labels, TV networks and movie studios to the program, we’ve reported.
Creators who didn’t sign on to YouTube Red had their videos on the ad-free YouTube hidden from view.
As YouTube moved away from Red’s use as a music service and began layering exclusive access to original series and movies, featuring YouTube stars like PewDiePie and the toxic influencer of the moment Logan Paul.
Both men have stirred up controversy and highlight the many problems that YouTube has with content from some of its most popular entertainers.
As YouTube continues to launch its premium content, the question remains whether it will continue to rely on YouTube-made celebrities like PewDiePie and Paul, which could be disastrous for the company’s advertisers, or tries to make more premium content in the Hulu or Netflix mold.
As it looks to go global, these content issues, and the attendant advertising struggles that come with them will likely only get thornier. Especially as key advertisers like Unilever start threatening to remove their business.
Wojcicki has said that YouTube will bring on 10,000 people to vet content… The company has yet to set a timeline for their hiring, but as the continued Paul controversy shows, the clock is ticking.