Scobeleizer's Robert Scobel, on a Jeff Jarvis-hosted panel called "Creating the New Television" lets on that he earns six figures per quarter from his show on PodTech, which is basically geeks talking to geeks. He said he earned that much because sponsors want to reach that rarified geek audience, so even if it's only a few thousand, or tens of thousands of people it's the right 10,000.
Others on the panel sounded like they were still looking for a way to justify the cost -- save, perhaps, Adam Elend, who Executive Produces the Wall Street goof WallStrip.com,Blogger: MediaFlect - Create Post and says he spends $2,500 to produce each daily episode, uses a SAG actor as a host, and also has the kind of rarified audience advertisers love to reach.
Mary Matthews, producer of 39 Second Single, whom Jarvis has promoted mightily on his blog, referred to needing a day job, and J. Crowley's Black20.com is done on a shoestring, as well.
Watching the various videos -- other than Scoble -- especially Crowley's little comic vignettes, I couldn't help but think that, yes, this is interesting, new content, targeted, Crowley says, at a young male demographic ("We're in that demo, so why not have us call all the shots" instead of going through some media execs who would control it, he said) - but it's still just amusing stuff, that anyone with a good comic sensibility can produce. Cheaper, fun, funny, and a matter of taste. But still, basically, a video vignette -- could have been Saturday Night Live or any other sketch comedy show, really.