San Francisco-based Blinkx has pursued partners partly as a way to get access to television programs and video that may be premium Web content or not currently available online, said Blinkx co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Suranga Chandratillake. Its content deals include deals with Reuters and Fox. Blinkx also has tapped into on-demand video on the Web. Along with its planned deal with Transmission Films, it already has a partnership with Movielink LLC, which makes movies from major studios available for download.Google, so far, has taken a different approach by recording broadcasts of television programs to power its video search engine. When Google Video went into a beta test earlier this year, it allowed users to search the programming information and closed-captioning data from broadcasters. Google has not provided video playback or links to video that is available on the Web. The Mountain View, Calif., company, though, has started to collect digital video for a future video-search effort. It launched the submission program last month as a way for both individuals and larger video producers to provide their video files. Collecting and indexing video is an important step for the search engines to take before television and video content can become more broadly accessible on the Web, Weiner said. "This is the less glamorous part of the business," Weiner said. "Its the mechanics part of the business, but its the part that needs to work to enable the next step of monetization." For now, the business models behind video search remain in flux, especially as the search engines contend with the complex copyright and royalty issues involved in video from traditional broadcasting. Neither Yahoo nor Google has offered many details about how it plans to make money from its video search offering, though both companies run the Webs largest programs for sponsored listings that presumably could be extended to Web search results. Blinkx, for its part, does receive a revenue share as part of some of its agreements with content providers when users pay to watch premium video content online, Chandratillake said. Editors Note: This story was updated to clarify incorrect information provided to Ziff Davis Internet about Blinkxs video partnerships. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, views and analysis on enterprise search technology.
"For all the content thats available on the Web for free, there is a lot more content that isnt available on the Web for free," Chandratillake said. "Its one thing to build search for NPR stories for the last month, but its something else to search for any television program broadcast in the United States."