We previously wrote about Niconico Douga back in Feburary. This popular social video site from Japan just announced that its premium membership now exceeds over two million paid members. That number was 1.8 million in Feburary, putting it on pace for about 50,000 new members per month.
The number of total registered users stood at more than 34 million as of June 2013, and out of these, more than two million pay the premium usage fee of 525 yen per month (or about $5). The site began offering premium membership way back in 2007 and has grown gradually since then. The company has been smart about providing incentives to those who pay this fee. Premium users can enjoy faster video delivery even during heavy traffic hours, and they are given priority seats to view certain live streaming sessions.
Niconico Douga has premium content called Niconico Nama-Hoso (roughly translated as Niconico live stream). By becoming a premium member, users can view exclusive content available only on Niconico. Starting this summer Japan’s upper house election will be opened for promotions online, and internet giants GREE, Twitter Japan, Dwango (the company behind Niconico), Yahoo, and Ustream plan to collaborate to mark the event. For the live stream, the top ten representatives will give a live speech and then take questions from viewers.
There are other popular contents on the site, such as Niconico channel where businesses can promote and stream video, as well as Niconico Seiga which provides static art works, mainly illustrations and digital books. The Niconico Novel Series was launched earlier this month, where a several well-known and popular novelists will publish contents, some exclusive to Niconico.