YouTube has been talking about its investment in original shows for its YouTube Red subscription service, including a titbit on how the latter is growing. “Over the last year we’ve seen our original series becoming one of the leading drivers of YouTube Red subscriptions, and viewership that rivals US cable shows,” said YouTube’s global head of original content Susanne Daniels in a keynote at the MIPCOM TV industry conference yesterday. It’s not the most specific of stats: looking at a recent weekly chart of the 25 top-rated cable shows in the US, they range from 13.2 million viewers to 3.2 million. Still, Daniels provided an insight into how YouTube Red is deciding what shows to commission. “Our thesis is simple: identify YouTube’s most engaging stars and top genres, and invest in the content that their fans tell us they want,” said Daniels. That includes a new show fronted by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, a Hollywood star who’s also been building a fanbase on YouTube. That suggests to us an opportunity for musicians with similar communities on the free YouTube service to receive funding for YouTube Red projects in the future.

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