What it is: Think YouTube meets Sundance. The Daily Reel handpicks the best creative clips to spare visitors the trouble of sifting through footage of lip-syncing suburban teens and Mentos-spewing college kids. What you end up with is a collection of the best and most creative short-form online videos filmed on a daily basis, hence the name. The site also gives filmmakers a place to connect with other online-content creators and an identity beyond a blank page with a video screen.
Who's behind it: Co-founders Jamie Patricof and Jeff Stern, two veteran Los Angeles TV and film producers with an eye for cutting-edge filmmaking (Mr. Patricof produced this summer's gritty indie hit "Half Nelson"). The team had initially planned on a fall 2006 launch, but rushed it to fruition in August due to the proliferation of content. "There were literally 100,000 new videos being uploaded every day, and who could make sense of that?" Mr. Stern said.
Why it matters: For filmmakers, YouTube page views and MySpace ubiquity are hard to monetize, but Daily Reel seeks to create more lucrative opportunities for those talented unknowns rounding the festival circuit. "We're in an interesting position in the online-video world where you might never need to go to the 'Half Nelson' stage and [instead] short films might be where you make your money," Mr. Patricof said. "That's one of the things were trying to help people figure out -- how do you make money?"
The ad angle: The ad model is slowly developing as Daily Reel does. But since the site posits itself as a hub for emerging talent in digital film, it's an ideal spot for studios, festivals and software manufacturers to reach out from a business-to-business standpoint. "The kind of people who make videos have strong traffic but also have strong futures in creating content and something other than a video on the web," Mr. Patricof said.