While Facebook has been getting attention recently as the next wave of social TV, Mark Burnett and Youtoo might have just ignited the first “age” of social TV. They’re launching an actual social TV network which aims to reach a national audience of 15 million by “putting 500 people on TV each day – providing more Americans than ever before with a real shot at their 15 minutes of fame,’” according to their release. Mark Burnett’s company will be curating the content.
Burnett is no stranger to social TV. The team behind the wildly-successful The Voice spoke happily about Burnett’s passion for the social web. Now his production studio VIMBY (Video in My BackYard) and online distributor KoldCast TV have teamed up with entrepreneur Chris Wyatt to launch Youtoo.
VIMBY will be producing content for the network asking users to submit video “FameSpots” or “Social Shouts” via the web, iPhone, iPad or Android to insert themselves into the content. Watch Burnett’s video (below) where he describes social TV as the “next generation of TV,” and claims that Youtoo is “the next big thing,” and after an in-depth interview with CEO and founder Chris Wyatt.
In 1997, Chris left a successful career in Hollywood as a network television producer and show runner to find the intersection of television and the internet. He was hired away from Hollywood by Softbank to be part of the team that launched the world’s first social network, Communites.com. He founded Big Jump Media and provided social networking sites to corporations on a private-label license basis. Big Jump Media culminated with Chris’ launch of GodTube as the fastest growing website of 2007 on launch. He drove the company to a $180M valuation and exited before he was able to purchase a cable network. Youtoo is financed through a series of institutional funds, secured debt and high-net worth individuals. In total the company has about 40 full-time employees with 30 FTEs (full-time equivalents.)
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Chris Wyatt: Youtoo is the world’s first social TV network. Since millions of people want to be on TV, we created a website and app for that. Youtoo is a social network, television network, and the technology to make them all work together.