05/15/2010 05:12 am ET Updated Jun 10, 2013

SXSW 2010 (Video) YouTube Testing Pay Scenario for Niche Content with "Rental"

AUSTIN -- YouTube Rental, the video sharing site's nascent pay-per-view service which launched in January with a handful of independent films, is becoming a paid platform  for creators of education, travel and entertainment programming, according to YouTube's Sara Pollack.

We caught up with her over the weekend at SXSW.  She said that the program is pulling in more film producers, but also is finding traction with non-theatrical channel partners including The Travel Store

and FUNimation, a popular anime channel.

Whether YouTube can compete with Netflix, Amazon and the cable companies in theatrical film distribution online is difficult to say, but surely out of the millions of videos on the YouTube servers, we expect some will fetch a payment. Moreover, we can expect producers of valuable, unique content to start to look to YouTube to monetize content through the "rental" program.

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