Serial entrepreneur Richard Rosenblatt thinks he’s found the next hot thing again: the mobile app Whipclip, launching today, that makes it easy for TV fans to snip and share pieces of video from more than 90 network shows.
“Everybody is thinking forward, about how to share video,” Rosenblatt said in demoing the app to me. “The technology is finally here.”
Rosenblatt was chairman of the early social-media success MySpace, selling it to Fox for $580 million in 2005, and content mill Demand Media, taking it public in 2010. Now he’s lined up an impressive group of backers and network partners to launch WhipClip.
The app functions like a mini-DVR in your phone. As you watch a show, it stores the last three minutes of live video, which can easily be snipped out and turned into a shareable nugget that can be posted on social-media sites such as Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr and Twitter, or emailed or texted to a friend. The technology was developed out of Israel by a team led by co-founder Ori Birnbaum.
The networks that have joined at launch include ABC, CBS, Fox, VH1, Bloomberg, OWN, TruTV, A+E and Lifetime, along with Universal Music Group and Sony Music. As part of the launch, the company is partnered with Comedy Central for the Monday night broadcast of the roast of singer Justin Bieber.
For networks and showrunners, Whiclip allows them to both designate what parts of a show can be shared and, importantly, those parts that can’t, because of music rights issues, for instance, or to temporarily obscure a spoiler moment.
Backers include such Hollywood bluebloods as WME, law firm Ziffren Brittenham, Mandalay’s Peter Guber, music manager Scooter Braun (his clients include Bieber), Ari Emanuel, media investor Gordon Crawford, Steve Bornstein and Ron Zuckerman, along with venture capital firms Greycroft, Institutional Venture Partners and Raine Ventures.
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