Contrary to popular belief that YouTuber users have the attention span of a goldfish, more than a third of all YouTube view time is for videos that are 20 minutes long or over. Not only is long form a serious draw for viewers but a third of all searches on the site are news and current affairs related and 80% of all YouTube traffic now comes from outside the U.S. These little nuggets of info were gleaned from an event for YouTube partners in L.A., and later confirmed by the site itself.
YouTube has spent the last couple of years encouraging original, broadcast quality programming. They have invested in a number of creators and opened up the site for monetization via paid channels for those who want to distribute their work that way. More live features have been added and YouTube are offering state of the art production facilities in L.A, London and Tokyo for creators who want to produce the best video content they can. With the general move away from traditional TV viewing and on to second screen devices and Connected TVs, YouTube need to keep encouraging this professionally produced, long form content in order to compete with Cable TV and other outlets.
Fans of long form video content will love this, currently the longest (and most boring) video on YouTube: