By Evan DeSimone
Yle, the national public broadcast network of Finland, announced today the launch of a new digital platform for millennial content creators, along with microfunding opportunities to support new creative content.
Founded in 1926, Yleisradio (commonly abbreviated as Yle) is Finland’s first public broadcaster. Yle currently operates six distinct television channels, with content ranging from news and entertainment to sports and educational programming. The broadcaster also operates numerous public radio stations, some of which are available digitally, but this latest move is their biggest push into the digital space to date.
According to a statement, Yle’s goal in launching the platform, the name of which won’t be revealed until later this month at Tubecon 2015 in Helsinki, is to nurture a community of millennial content creators and curators working in the medium of short form or “snack-sized” video. Creators will be mostly aged 15–25, and will be chosen from multiple creative genres with an eye toward covering the full range of modern Finnish youth culture.
The broadcaster plans to take a relatively hands-off position, delegating most content decisions to its creative community and acting merely as a facilitator. A monthly youth board will meet decide which creator projects should receive support, which will include taxpayer funded grants ranging from a few hundred to 2000 Euros. While the platform will be digital-first, television is still a part of the equation. Yle has cleared a slot on its youth oriented channel, TV2, to air weekly video compilations from creators.
The idea of public broadcasters entering the digital space isn’t new. In the United States PBS Digital Studios, the digital offshoot of public broadcaster PBS, has established a significant presence on YouTube. The growing digital network delivers daily original entertainment and educational content from top creators. as well as repurposed or remixed classic content from PBS’s linear television side.