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YouTube debuts in Singapore

Following its recent launch in the Philippines, YouTube has unveiled its localised service for Singapore with SingTel and Malaysia Airlines as launch advertisers.

The service allows users to easily find local videos and tying up with local content partners such as production companies and musicians for high quality content offerings.

SingTel has already secured a masthead advertisement on YouTube’s Singapore home page on its opening day.

YouTube has already partnered with local media companies such as Interactive SG, Valleyarm/ Music Services Asia, World Sport Group, Warner Music Group, Refinery Media, and Oak3 who will be able to distribute their content on YouTube.

Ash Singh, founder & CEO of production company Interactive SG said YouTube would give his firm a flexible, global way to monetise its videos. The site is expected to create a new online space for the national community and give Singaporean creators the opportunity to increase their exposure.

YouTube has also signed a licensing agreement with the Composers & Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS) allowing music artists to earn revenue on YouTube. Revenue is generated when advertisements are displayed against a YouTube partner’s videos. Under this agreement, Singaporean authors will now receive payments from their associations when rights holders distribute them.

Edmund Lam, CEO & director of COMPASS said: “Reaching an agreement with YouTube is a step forward that creates major new opportunities for our members and affiliates. From now on, they will receive fair payment for the use of their works on YouTube which is a very positive step for our songwriters and publishers, and, more broadly, the Internet.”

There will also be a YouTube Partner Program open to Singaporean video creators who make original, high-quality videos on a regular basis, to become content partners with YouTube and monetize their work on the site through advertising.

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported YouTube setting aside more than US$100million for its big push into high quality content with the aim of recouping the cost from advertising revenue it will sell against the content, signing on personalities such as skateboarder Tony Hawk or with major media companies such as Fremantle Media in the US.

YouTube made its first Southeast Asia launch earlier this month in the Philippines.

Adam Smith (pictured), director of product management for YouTube in the Asia-Pacific region said: “Even though we’re only launching a localised site for Singapore today, Singaporeans have already been an extremely large and important audience on YouTube. Through localising YouTube in Singapore, the site will deliver more of the content Singaporeans want to see, and we hope the world will continue to discover the amazing culture and talent that exists in Singapore today.”

Users can visit this localised Singapore site by choosing “Singapore” as the location setting at the bottom of the YouTube.com homepage or going directly to http://youtube.com.sg.

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