January 30, 2007, 12:00 AM

Taking a page from YouTube, BabyUniverse and ShopWiki offer video uploading

BabyUniverse has launched MyBabyTV, a user-generated video uploading service. Shopping comparison site ShopWiki.com has launched a contest to encourage consumers to upload videos of their favorite gadgets.

YouTube was just the start. While YouTube may have sparked the craze for consumers to upload videos to the Internet for the world’s viewing pleasure, other sites are capitalizing on consumers’ desire to be known to the multitudes through video.

The latest: BabyUniverse, an e-commerce and media site focusing on the pregnancy, baby and toddler market, has launched MyBabyTV, a user-generated video uploading section of BabyTV.com. And shopping comparison site ShopWiki.com has launched a contest to encourage consumers to upload testimonial videos of their favorite gadgets.

BabyUniverse acknowledges the influence of YouTube, which is itself a baby at less than a year and a half old. Videos, BabyUniverse says in its announcement, are “presented in a ‘YouTube’-style upload and search format.” And it refers to MyBabyTV.com as “YouTube for mommies.”

A moderator will review videos for appropriate content. “Female consumers are clearly seeking community sites where they can share content and interact socially with one another,” says John Textor, chairman and CEO of BabyUniverse. “The addition of user generated content and uploading capability brings BabyTV.com one step closer to becoming a comprehensive social networking community completely dedicated to new parents.” Georgianne Brown, BabyUniverse’s president of mainstream commerce, will speak at Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition, June 4-7 in San Jose, on June 6 in a session entitled Web-TV: The Medium Is Once Again A Message about Brand Marketing.

BabyUniverse, No. 235 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, will promote MyBabyTV to 1.7 million monthly unique visitors to its affiliated web sites and to 450,000 recipients of its e-mail newsletter. It will also offer contests, with free merchandise from the BabyUniverse catalog, to encourage parents to submit videos.

At ShopWiki.com, consumers who upload videos about their favorite products can win a $500 gift certificate from Amazon.com, Best Buy, Target, Overstock.com or Apple. ShopWiki calls the campaign “I Heart My [Blank],” with the angle being that consumers will upload video love letters to their favorite products, tying into Valentine’s Day. ShopWiki will accept videos through Feb. 12 and users will then vote on their favorites on Feb. 13. The winner will be announced Feb. 14.

ShopWiki already features more than 500 user-generated video reviews of products. It also hosts more than 1,500 buying and gift guides written and edited by shoppers.

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