YouTube Inc. will start paying "the most popular and prolific" members of its video sharing website, the company announced Thursday.
"Up until now there’s been a distinction between the content you create and the content created by YouTube's professional content partners," a post on YouTube's corporate blog stated.
"We want to start changing some of the perception here. Which is why we’re adding several of the most popular and prolific original content creators from the YouTube community to our partnership program."
YouTube will initially move a handful of its top video-posters who have "built and sustained large, persistent audiences" to a revenue-sharing arrangement similar to those enjoyed by broadcasters such as CBS and NBC, professional sports organizations such as the National Basketball Association and National Hockey League, as well as music and other entertainment companies, including Universal Music Group and video game publisher Electronic Arts.