Steven Asherman, founder of Content Galaxy, saw an opportunity to disrupt the customary way we view video-content online. Content Galaxy is a web content hosting service that gives authors and publishers a better way to earn money from their videos and other digital goods. Unlike already established video streaming giants Netflix, YouTube and Vimeo, Content Galaxy allows users to upload their digital content, and get paid according to “rigorously metered usage”. He is hoping that it will be enticing for publishers who want to make money off instructional videos. Publishers pool content to edited, flat priced channels, getting paid according to the number of subscribers and their usage. Subscribers pay a single fee for channeling content; it is possible for large-scale micro commerce in video streaming.
Asherman is no stranger to the tech world; he founded a consulting and software company in 1993 and began selling software in 1998. In the early-2000’s he began to directly feel the shift taking place on the internet, and software was became harder and harder for him to sell. Open source free software and file sharing programs were shaking up the tech world; “That’s when I started to understand that the internet was really changing the rules for monetizing intellectual property. The system was in a process of breaking, which I think we have seen in the music business because of LimeWire type programs and we in open source, it’s a problem for people trying to sell photographs and also of course book business itself, and articles and magazines. The experience has changed.”
Asherman carefully assessed the changing atmosphere, and after letting the idea percolate for about a year, he eventually created a game-changing video service. “What we are doing is filling the gaps between Netflix’s high-end, Hollywood approach — the iTunes, item by item purchasing model and YouTube free ad sponsor clips.”
As for the future, Asherman sees an opportunity to expand this newly created industry of online video content. He believes it is time to bring back, or rather include, publishers to the online video industry. “I am very interested in real media publishers taking over the job of creating channels and making all the decisions about them. We are just the infrastructure that allows them to concentrate on making their channel.”