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Yahoo! Unveils New Webcasting Initiative

Yahoo! (www.yahoo.com) unveiled its new streaming platform called, "Yahoo! Webcast Studio," to help companies broadcast events. The new service combines Yahoo!'s broadcasting services and tools, which is similar in look and feel to Yahoo! FinanceVision. Yahoo! co-founder Jerry Yang, highlighted the platform during his keynote speech at Streaming Media West.

During his speech, Yang proclaimed that "broadband is here." He said Yahoo!'s streaming has been growing dramatically; from 8 million hours in December 1999 to 15 million streaming hours in September 2000. Although he said entertainment was a big driver, business streaming was the most practical application.

Yang talked about wrapping streams with B2B. This new platform is specialized for live webcasts, delivered over the Internet or corporate intranets. Producers can include a video window, a synchronized data window, browser and chat or polls. The application can also auto-detect media players, bandwidth and more.

"Mass customization of webcast production and delivery is now upon us," said Stan Woodward, vice president of Business Services for Yahoo! in a statement. "With this new production engine, we are bringing all of our experience and capabilities to one platform. We believe this is the future for webcasting and expect potential applications such as corporate broadcasting centers and self-serve webcasting for experienced, high-end customers will grow from this powerful new platform."

"The industry needs to move together," Yang said. "One company can't make everything happen. We need to work together."

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