Case in point -- CBS just announced Q2 2011 results. And, guess what -- online licensing deals were a significant reason for a significant JUMP in profits -- a 2X jump to be exact according to the Wall Street Journal (nearly $400 million of net income for the quarter). CBS's licensing deal with online distribution giant Netflix was a primary driver of these significantly juiced online revenues. But since CBS's deal with Netflix is not exclusive, there's significantly more money in them thar online hills (Amazon, Google, Apple, Vudu anyone?).
The conclusion? Well, I am an optimist. I have always believed that "If You Produce Desired Video Content, Effective Monetization Will Come!" CBS is seeing that happen now in real time.
These are early data points to be sure, but via continuous biz model and pricing experimentation (I recently praised Netflix for its own pricing experimentation), the monetization light will burn ever brighter. In a world where consumers conceptually should be able to access their desired video content on demand -- anywhere and on any device -- producers of desirous content now have so many more ways to find their audience and be seen.