Five years is a long time to do anything. It’s a long time to drink the same beer, it’s a long time to attend the same school, and in Internet years (like dog years), it would put you squarely in that awkward period between still thinking you’re cool, and senile dotage. Sort of like Brett Favre.
But I’m proud to announce that as of May 23rd, 2010, Revision3 is officially five years old. Now the official “present” for a 5 year anniversary is wood. But, er, I guess we’ll just forgo the puerile jokes and get right to it.
Five years ago, a handful of frustrated technology and video professionals surveyed the TV landscape, and were not happy with what they saw. A promising and much-loved network, TechTV, had just been emasculated by the cable equivalent of Dunder-Mifflin. Hope, however, was on the horizon, as Apple had just announced a photo-iPod, and video was on the way. New encoding techniques, coupled with broadband advances finally made it possible to actually deliver compelling video through the World Wide Web. And so these intrepid pioneers decided to start making shows the way they wanted, covering the stuff they wanted to cover. And five years ago, the first episode of SYSTM was released to the world.
From iTunes to Youtube to full-on HDTV, we’ve come a long way since then. Our roster of 20+ shows have been enjoyed by hundreds of millions of viewers, we’ve given birth to an entire industry of content that lives apart from – and is now rivaling – the same lowest-common-denomiator pablum served up by almost all traditional TV.
Even more impressive, we’ve actually changed traditional TV – and the Internet – along the way. More than one traditional show now incorporates our signature host-sponsorships, we’ve spotted shows that incorporate drinking in their narrative, and our hosts have become frequent guests on traditional TV.
Back in 2005, the idea that anyone would watch a half hour show via the Internet was ridiculed and dismissed. Snackisodes were the future, claimed the pundits, and we were simply wrong-headed and ill informed. Our audience knew better, and now everyone else does too. Hulu certainly brought legitimacy to the model, but we’ve known all along that it’s not about short form online and long form on TV, but a “best screen available” model. When the urge strikes viewers want to watch what they want, where then want, when they want, on the best screen at hand.
Oh, and don’t forget our innovative ways to make real money on web video. Our sponsorship model has proven to be, hands down, the best performing, most useful, and most acceptable format for video advertising ever. Survey after survey continue to show that if you want to reach an Internet-savvy audience in a meaningful way, nothing is better than an authentic message delivered in context by a loved and trusted host. And that’s all we do.
It’s been a great five years. But we’re not resting on our tremendous success. We continue to innovate, continue to break new ground, and continue to bring you great new hosts, shows and web experiences. Our recent launch of Food Mob shows that cooking shows don’t have to be just Food Porn and vapid chatter – there’s a place for a fun show that helps the rest of us learn how to make our favorite foods.
And speaking of porn, we’ve re-invented that as well, by bringing the stylistic conventions of “Boogie Nights” to the drab and boring world of unboxing videos. The iPad never looked so sexy, and chances are you’ll see more of this show as the months unfold.
One guy you’re already seeing a lot of is Penn Jillette, our newest star and host of Penn Point. It’s a perfect mix of the authentic host, engaged audience and controversial content. Fun, entertaining and revealing, it’s what reality TV really should be!
On the web, we’ve got great things planned as well. Later this week we have the biggest update to our site since, well, the site launched, with tons of new features to help you engage not only with our shows and hosts, but with each other too!
We’ve got a lot more coming up too! But I’ve got one more thing to announce – it’s our gala 5th anniversary party, and you’re all invited! That’s right, we’re going to celebrate our amazing progress, five years of awesome content, and our tremendous lineup of new shows with a bash you will not want to miss. It’s right here in San Francisco, on June 25th, and I hope you can join our founders – Kevin Rose, Jay Adelson, David Prager and the crew for a live Diggnation, Scam School, and tons of special guests – and a few surprises along the way. (Feel free to RSVP over on Facebook)
So thanks to everyone who made Revision3 such a raging success over the past five years, and for all of our great viewers who have been such great supporters over the years. Oh, and one last thing. You ain’t seen nuthin yet. The next five years are going to rock your world, so stay tuned!