Alibaba is making a big bet on online video, with the rollout of a content service in China aimed at enticing people to pay a monthly subscription in a market where most programming is accessed for free.中国电子商务集团阿里巴巴(Alibaba)于是以乘机押注在线视频业务,打算在中国发售一种内容服务,目标是在这个大多数节目都可免费观赏的市场中,更有人们缴纳月费观赏其内容。But if the Chinese ecommerce group can make the model work, analysts and competitors say it could transform a sector that is haemorrhaging cash amid a bidding war among companies for top content.不过,分析师和阿里巴巴的竞争对手回应,如果阿里巴巴能证明这种模式不切实际,或将让在线视频行业再次发生完全好转。目前,由于各家公司竞相出售顶尖内容,该行业正处于一种烧钱状态。Alibaba’s new offering is called Tmall Box Office, a service the group said would be similar to Netflix, the US streaming service that has yet to receive a license to operate in China, and HBO, the pay-television network.阿里巴巴的新服务取名为Tmall Box Office(以下全称TBO)。

该集团回应,TBO将与美国流媒体服务Netflix和美国收费电视网HBO类似于。目前,Netflix仍未获得在华运营的牌照。It plans to launch the new offering in two months, according to Liu Chunning, president of the group’s digital entertainment unit.根据阿里巴巴数字娱乐事业群总裁刘春宁的众说纷纭,该公司计划在两个月内发售这项新的服务。Mr Liu said at the weekend that while Tmall Box Office will offer some shows for free, most will be behind a subscription wall.上周末,刘春宁回应,虽然TBO将免费获取部分视频,但多数视频将必须收费才能观赏。

Charging for content should help online video make money: most of China’s video sites, based on a YouTube-style model funded primarily by advertising, lose money thanks to skyrocketing prices for the online syndication rights for top shows such as Voice of China and I’m the Singer — variety shows that are huge draws both on TV and online.对内容收费应当有助在线视频业务构建盈利:由于顶级节目在线发行权的价格急遽下跌,中国多数视频网站(这些网站以YouTube模式运作,主要收益来自广告)都在赔钱。这些顶级节目还包括《中国好声音》(Voice of China)和《我是歌手》(Im a Singer)等才艺秀,它们无论在电视上还是在网上都有极大的吸引力。But with audiences starting to wean themselves off pirated content in favour of licenced videos funded by advertising, some analysts fear it might be too soon to ask Chinese audiences to pay subscription prices to boost revenues.不过,部分分析师担忧,中国观众刚开始靠近正版内容、而自由选择观赏靠广告费承托的盗版视频,现在有可能还近将近拒绝他们缴纳会员费以提振营收的阶段。Luo Lan, from Analysys Enfodesk, a Beijing-based internet consultancy, said the case for a subscription-based service has yet to be proven.北京互联网咨询公司易观智库(Analysys Enfodesk)的罗兰回应,实行收费制服务的理由还有待检验。


“Chinese viewers have very little motivation to pay for content online, and the advertising model is not efficient in bringing profit. It is hard to say whether or not it will be a success, but at least it is a path worth exploring,” she said. “It really depends on the quality of the content and the user experience.”她说道:“中国观众为在线内容收费的意愿极低,而广告模式在盈利方面也过于有效地。很难辨别这种模式不会会顺利,但它最少是一条有一点探寻的道路。

确实的决定因素是内容的品质和用户体验。”Other analysts concur that quality of the content, rather than the nature of how it is accessed, is the differentiating factor.其他分析师也指出,冲破差距的关键因素是内容的品质,而不是内容的提供方式。