Talent is a scarce resource. My Damn Channel wants to find more of it.
The new media studio (which just celebrated its fourth birthday!) and internet destination for original alt-comedy web series hits like You Suck at Photoshop, David Wain’s Wainy Days, and Josh Gad’s Gigi today announced the creation of a new division with the explicit intent to find individuals with mad online video skills. That new division is called the My Damn Channel Talent Network. Its Director of Talent & Audience Development is Molly Templeton, but you may know her as mememolly.
Templeton has exactly the kind of online video experience and internet cred My Damn Channel Founcer/CEO Rob Barnett was looking for in someone charged with signing and developing fresh online video creators, producing their original web series, and enlarging the audiences for those productions.
Templeton started uploading videos to YouTube way back in 2006. Since then, she’s garnered over 51 million views across 74 videos and acquired some 127,000+ YouTube subscribers. Not so bad! Especially considering she hasn’t uploaded a single piece of content to her channel on the world’s largest video sharing site since September 7, 2010. But it’s not like Templeton has been neglecting the medium. Since July 6, 2009, she’s hosted the perennial daily video news show Rocketboom, where Templeton’s covered internet, pop and tech culture with aplomb.
Templeton’s hire as the shiny new Director of Talent and Audience Development of My Damn Channel comes a year after the company officially raised its latest $4.4 million round of funding and four months after My Damn Channel partnered with Subway, University of Southern California and IFC for the Subway Fresh Artists Filmmakers Contest and subsequent web series.
I caught up with Barnett and Templeton to ask them how the new division and the new gig came to be and what kind of content we can expect Molly to bring into the MyDamnChannel.com family.
Tubefilter: Is My Damn Channel going to pursue the type of representation, distribution, or advertising deals we’ve seen from new media companies like Revision3, blip.tv, and The Collective? Or will you be looking to find talent and then develop shows internally?
Rob Barnett: For four years, we’ve had a prime focus bringing major talent in-house to produce and distribute great original content. With the success of Daily Grace and more new talent we’ve developed, the time was right to add someone with Molly’s experience and sensibility to our management team. Molly will give more new talent a chance to get prime placement on www.MyDamnChannel.com and throughout our distribution network.
TF: Why Molly?
RB: If you’ve met Molly, then you know she’s simply one of the smartest, most talented, experienced people in online video. A secret to success is to hire people smarter than you are…and we just did. Molly has the battlefield experience and passion to help content creators crack the code and break through.
TF: Molly, you’ve been in front of the camera for a while. How does it feel to start working more in a business capacity?
Molly Templeton: In addition to hosting, I have been a producer and distributor. I find discovering new talent to be the most thrilling aspect of working in web video and I love creating content collaboratively. Being in front of the camera is fun, but I have always been more interested in what leads up to the moment a video gets watched and the community surrounds that experience. I want to find better ways to interact with audiences from a network point of view.
TF: Will you still be doing any work in front of the camera?
MT: Yes. When the time is right, we plan to develop new programming that I will host.
TF: What type of talent will you be looking for?
MT: Exciting, unique, rewarding content with an internet-mindset.
RB: Smart, Original, Fearless, Entertaining Communicators.
TF: What’s the upcoming production slate look like at My Damn Channel?
RB: The password is “more.” We’ve always put quality first and put massive promotion behind our series to make sure our artists have the best chance to breakout from the sea of videos. But we’re doing well enough now four years in to expand our management team and open up the pipeline to develop and launch more talent. We already had about a dozen pilots on our summer/fall slate. With Molly now here, that number will increase, and you’ll see a lot more new faces on My Damn Channel by year’s end.
TF: I see a lot of mentions of the My Damn Channel Distribution Network. Who are your distribution partners?
RB: We’ve been a YouTube partner since we launched in 2007, but ever since our Chief Revenue Officer joined this spring, we’ve rapidly added more sites to scale our network and share the business from our branded deals with a wide array of sites and portals plus companies like Boxee, Roku, and the new My Damn Channel Blog Network.
Keep reading Tubefilter to know when “more” My Damn Channel content will debut on the studio’s distribution network. There’s also no word yet on who will replace mememolly behind the Rocketboom news desk, but we’ll keep you posted on that as well. Stay tuned.