YouTube’s tagline has always been “broadcast yourself.” Now the Google-owned video site is taking that concept to another level with the launch of YouTube live streaming as it looks to compete with upstarts like Ustream.
On Sunday (Sept. 12) YouTube kicked off a test of the new live platform with four partners: Howcast, Next New Networks, Rocketboom and Young Hollywood.
Through the end of day Monday, each will stream several live programming blocks. For example, at 10:30 PST on Monday, Young Hollywood will broadcast an interview with skateboarding legend Tony Hawk live from the company’s studio. Besides live video, the new streaming platform allows users to post comments in real time.
While starting with professionally produced content, YouTube is billing its streaming platform as a way for anybody with a Webcam to become a broadcaster. It’s that open access that has driven the success of Ustream, Justin.tv and live-streaming outlets.
YouTube officials said that it will review the results of this weeks test, but plans are in the works to roll out live streaming to more partners.