You might not know Barcroft Media, but if you've ever found yourself watching a buffalo launching a lion into the air, a snake devour a crocodile whole or a dog the size of a Coca-Cola can, you've encountered its
Barcroft Media was founded in 2003 by photojournalist
Barcroft TV is now the second most popular news channel in the world on
Is it just about shocking and/or funny animal videos? Barcroft says not, pointing to a series of videos about transgender couple
"We present them in a way that connects with our audience really well: non-judgmental and in a clear and simple way. Our trick is to present controversial, shocking, emotional and thought-provoking stories, but to tell them in a very straight way," he says. "Our audience then get hold of those things and furiously debate them. We don't tell people that it's right or wrong to go and shoot elephants for sport, or to not eat, or to have a gender reassignment surgery. We present people's stories objectively and carefully, then we hope that stirs debate and interaction."
Like other online video and/or news companies - Vice, The Young Turks and Upworthy for example - Barcroft Media sees itself as serving a youthful audience neglected by traditional media. "A lot of young people have very important views about issues in the world: that's the demographic of people on their phones, and sharing and commenting and interacting," he says. "They're the native internet generation, but they have been completely abandoned by the mainstream media. Our content is designed for them."
Barcroft admits that making money from
"As a news company, it's pretty much impossible to make enough money to survive just on
Barcroft is animated when discussing the "traditional shoe-leather journalism" behind his company's videos, with newsrooms in
"The reason our company has done so well is that our factual content helps people go into other worlds, and enjoy stories that take them out of their 9-to-5 and the challenges of living in a recession. Why shouldn't people be excited about
And eyeballs. "We're going to do a billion views over the next year across all of these platforms, and we're a small company in Hackney," says Barcroft. "We think that's proof positive that if you've got a real understanding of what people want, and you're very energetic about creating great content, these new platforms give you the chance to be a global player."
Snappy image . . . Barcroft Media's photo shows a crocodile trying to grab an impala
Most Popular Stories
- Homeowners More Satisfied With Mortgage Servicers
- Discounts Help U.S. Auto Sales Sizzle in July
- Russia, Ukraine Now Face Off Over Football Clubs
- Colorado Issuing Immigrant Driver's Licenses
- Recruiting and Keeping the Perfect Employee
- MassMutual Teams Up With ALPFA
- Chrysler U.S. Sales in July Hit 9-Year High
- Fiat Looks Abroad After Chrysler Merger Vote
- Obama Vows to Veto House Immigration Bill
- Dow Wipes Out Gains for the Year: What Happens Now?