Will people pay for online content served in real-time, and how much will they pay? Webcasting company Ustream will find out on February 6th, when comedian Dane Cook will offer a live video stream of the last show in his current tour for $5 as the first trial of Ustream’s new pay-per-view format.
Fans can buy a ticket for the show ahead of time at ustream.tv/danecooktickets. The five-dollar package includes a chat with Cook both before and after the concert, plus backstage access. When the show goes live on the 6th at ustream.tv/danecook, Cook will take questions from the online audience.
As far as I can tell, this is the first time the pay-per-view model for webcast has been tested with someone of Dane Cook’s celebrity status. I hope Ustream has the chutzpah to publish the number of tickets they sell. Here’s another idea: Publish the chat log after the event is over, to see if fans who pay for the event are happy with it. Or will they complain about the quality — both technical and content-wise — of the webcast? I mean, isn’t the Internet a sophisticated network for complaining?