Those videos of napping pets and lame karaoke are nice and all, but YouTube is looking for something a little more ... professional. The Wall Street Journal reports that big changes are in the works at the site, which plans to put a much heavier emphasis on its own original content. Parent Google is spending $100 million to create programming—figure up to 10 hours a week—that would be featured on about 20 premium YouTube channels. It's already in contact with Hollywood's big talent agencies, and the changes could begin by the end of the year.
The Journal's take on the shift in philosophy: YouTube "built its site to drive traffic to individual videos and to help those clips go viral. Now, it is trying to get people to spend more time on the site by creating a network of ad-supported channels that users come to YouTube to tune in to." AT ZDNet, Larry Dignan notes that the revamp "would make it more aligned with the nascent Google TV effort." (Read more YouTube stories.)