CollegeHumor, the comedy-focused digital media company which has 15 million-plus followers across its social media platforms, announced on Tuesday the public beta launch of DROPOUT, its ad-free, mixed-media subscription service.
The ad-free service will cost $5.99 per month or $49 yearly. The monthly fee gives subscribers access to premium video and a mix of content including digital comics and chat stories which will play an integral role in the DROPOUT experience, according to CollegeHumor’s chief business officer Shane Rahmani.
“We’re focused on world-building sketch comedy rooted in the CollegeHumor universe, and the visual storytelling of comics and chat stories will bridge and expand upon the narratives between new episodes of DROPOUT’s original shows,” Rahmani said. “For example, between new episodes of Jake and Amir’s “Lonely and Horny,” [viewers] can read through Amir’s character Ruby Jade’s many, many failed attempts at text message flirting in one of “Lonely and Horny’s” chat stories. Or, [they] can follow along with Caldwell and Nathan in the digital comic ‘Cartoon Hell Presents,’ where the two try to pitch a new comic series based on their drawings from the DROPOUT original show, ‘Cartoon Hell.'”
It’s this mixed media offering that Rahmani says separates DROPOUT from the competition, like NBC’s now retired comedy-focused streaming service Seeso. The CBO also points to the company’s massive online following as signs of future success. He said that CollegeHumor is one of the top viewed digital comedy channel on YouTube with 13 million+ subscribers, and 6.5 billion total views to date.
“When you include Dorkly and Drawfee, our sister brands, from which much of DROPOUT content is drawn, we top 15 million subs on YouTube, 10 million followers on Facebook and 10-15 million monthly visits to our websites,” Rahmani said.
In order to convert this growing online userbase, DROPOUT will release short video clips from its original content across CollegeHumor’s social media channels. According to Rahmani, every episode from DROPOUT’s original shows was written with a segment intended to be released as a standalone on ad-supported platforms that will act as bait to attract viewers back to the new subscription platform.
Rahmani says that original content — across all forms of media — will be the backbone of DROPOUT. The service’s first-year content slate will include 11 shows, 20 different comic series, and 40 separate chat stories, which are stories that unfold via text messages.
During public beta, which is expected to run for three months, DROPOUT will be available for $3.99 per month. The service will then offer a tiered pricing model, starting at $3.99 per month with an annual subscription, $4.99 per month with a six-month subscription, and $5.99 for a month-by-month subscription.