Hank Green and Bernie Su’s Lizzie Bennet Diaries celebrates #darcyday

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries might be one of the most important web content stories of 2012: The YouTube adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice has not only secured its financial future thanks to DECA, but has built an intense fanbase for future literary adaptations.

DECA Launches A Video Syndication Network For Women

DECA is expanding its available ad inventory with the launch of a new online video syndication network called Her Channel. The network was built to match up DECA’s video properties, along with those of its partners, with a wide range of publishers across the web.

Why Doesn’t Web Video Like the “C Word”?

Julia Allison, Meghan Asha and Mary Ramblin. Photo from the TMI Weekly blog.

It’s a quiet afternoon when my phone rings with an unknown number. I don’t get a lot of phone calls from unknown numbers, especially from people who have been the focus of both the New York Times and fierce reblogging sites, so it’s a bit surprising to discover that Julia Allison is on the line.
Allison was calling me because about half an hour earlier, I had emailed her about TMI Weekly, the show she co-hosted and produced for Next New Networks starting in the fall of 2008 — and I had used the word “cancellation” in doing so. So, before getting down to my real questions about the current state of the show, whose one-year contract was not renewed due to a mutual decision between the TMI team and NNN, we went back and forth briefly over whether or not the word is applicable.
The debate over using “the C word” didn’t surprise me. It’s not a pretty word, cancellation, so it’s not surprising that we tend to avoid it. In fact, as a community in general, we talk a lot more about the shows that are beginning than we do about the shows that are about to end. Which makes sense — for one thing, a lot of shows (especially scripted ones) have limited resources, and season finales are all-too-often series finales. For another, many creators and companies who are in the business of creating ongoing brands are still figuring out what this medium is capable of, and are constantly reinventing themselves and their projects. Read More about Why Doesn’t Web Video Like the “C Word”?

Online Studio Deca Raises $10M

Surprise, surprise — it doesn’t seem like online content studios are going to fade out of existence anytime soon. That’s for one simple reason, and it’s not massive profit margins: they keep finding true believers to give them more money.

Santa Monica-based Deca raised $10 million in a second round of funding, as was reported by socalTECH last week. Rustic Canyon Partners led the round, which also included previous investors Atomico, General Catalyst Partners and Mayfield Fund.

We are late to this story because we got held up tracking down a rumor that the round had come at a tiny valuation, which Deca CEO Michael Wayne flat-out denied today. Including the latest round, Deca has raised $15 million. It has just under 20 employees and seven properties, including its newest, Momversation, but not including the recently shut down Bush League.

Deca’s Bush League Strikes Out

Bush League.tv, the dude-centric web series/blog launched by Deca in May of last year, was shut down in December. Deca CEO Michael Wayne confirmed the site was shuttered in a phone conversation this afternoon. Though the Bush League site is still up, it has not been updated since Dec. 18.

It’s not much of a surprise as the writing was on the wall for Bush League practically since its inception. The web is not short on programming for guys, and Bush League didn’t have any special hook that made it stand out in the crowd. (NewTeeVee contributor Steve Bryant referred to the group producing it as “charming ass-hats.”). Even Deca CEO Michael Wayne indicated that Bush League was not long for this world back in October, when he told ClickZ:

“The producers who pitched it were very talented, but the idea could have been more focused,” said Wayne. “After it launched, instead of standing out of the crowd it became one of a thousand sites targeted to young men.”

The golden age of web series has run head on into the economic realities, with a number of them getting the axe over the past year. Yahoo deep-sixed The 9, Revision3 canceled the shows Internet Superstar, Pixel Perfect and PopSiren, and CBS stopped making new episodes of Moblogic.

Are any of your favorite shows suddenly AWOL? Drop us a line and let us know.

Ninja Tops iTunes Podcast List (Again)

Apple (s AAPL) released the iTunes top-seller and best-of lists for 2008 this week, and Ask A Ninja was once again took top honors on the “Classics” Video Podcast list. On the more traditional media side, Gossip Girl was the top-selling TV season on iTunes while The Dark Knight (which hasn’t even been released yet on iTunes) came in at No. 1 on downloaded movie chart.

Apple doesn’t spell out whether the video podcast list is editorially created or based on hard numbers, but either way, new media shows are well represented on both the 2008 and Classics video podcast lists. Making the cut this year are:


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Alex Albrecht Goes Medieval with Lore

One of the first rules of journalism is to never start your story with a quote, but this one just fits too well: “People have said I have an interesting knack to be able to monetize my life.” That’s Alex Albrecht (no relation, I asked) talking about his new World of Warcraft online show and web site Project Lore, which launches today.

Tell me if this premise sounds familiar. Albrecht sits around, drinking beer with his buddies talking about some nerd-friendly topic. This time instead of Digg stories (Diggnation) or movies (The Totally Rad Show), Albrecht will be talking World of Warcraft. News, glossary terms, strategy — all of it. “One of the things I found frustrating with WoW,” Albrecht said, “is that there is so much info but not really one good place to get the information.”

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