Justin.tv, the non-stop TV show featuring an extremely popular webcam of a guy named Justin in San Francisco (see it in action below), is unveiling a network to allow other people to do the same thing.
The technology required to stream video of your life to large numbers of viewers, while you are constantly on the go, for example in a car, is not as easy as it looks, and Justin.tv has gotten a reputation of doing it well.
The show is trying to become a company (in Silicon Valley, you can’t stay small and frivolous without people wondering what is wrong with you), and so a network is one way to do this. It will offer people a vanity URL (http://justin.tv/name) and the staples featured on Justin’s page, such as a chat room, calendar, clip archives and so on. Techcrunch has the details here. These features are certainly nifty, when compared to most off-the-shelf video tools offered by YouTube and chat/networking sites. Yet another company, Ustream.tv, has recently popped up to do something similar.
Justin.tv got previous funding from YCombinator. It has benefited from hype and entered bubble territory more than most companies. The other problem with a network is that anyone shooting 24/7 cams of themselves are unlikely to want to fork over any ad revenue they earn to Justin.tv. Few people are likely to spark with viewers as well as Justin.
Even this evening, the future of Justin.tv was being debated at the site itself:
VB's research team is studying web-personalization... Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.