YouTube doesn’t seem big enough for Amber Madison, a 23-year-old author who turned the experience she gained writing sex advice for the campus newspaper at Tufts into Hooking Up: A Girl’s All-Out Guide to Sex & Sexuality, published earlier this year by Prometheus. In addition to her standard website, Madison is collaborating with Weller/Grossman Productions, a TV production company specializing in reality-based programming for networks from CNN to Animal Planet, and Permission TV, a technology firm which has provided broadband video capabilities for clients like Mitt Romney and Activision, on AmberMadisonTV.com. The website debuted last month with thirty widescreen “episodes” of The Talk With Amber Madison, a series of short videos—with larger “screens” than YouTube and better image quality—featuring advice on everything from how to deal with undesired “hair down there” to extracting yourself from an abusive relationship. New episodes are added weekly, and viewers are able to email their own questions to Madison or participate in the site’s other online forums. (There’s a long disclaimer video before you get to the content, explaining why visitors shouldn’t post their personal information, how Madison’s not a doctor, and so on.)
The press release about the website is careful to note that this isn’t intended to promote Madison’s book, but is “a genuine new media venture” reaching out to its own audience. But of course there’s a consideration towards her publishing career, if only in the sense that the young author is assembling her own “platform,” as the industry experts call it. Although the production values could still use a little work; between that backdrop and the fake plant, the clips still have a slight aura of public access about them…or, ironically enough, a porn studio in the Valley.