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YouTube Yuks It Up with Comedy Week Stunt

Online laff-fest running week of May 19-25 won't have sponsorship component

YouTube has lined up more than 40 comedians, actors and digital comedy producers for its first Comedy Week, a weeklong online event to run May 19-25.

There is no advertising opportunity with vidsite’s first digital laff-fest — goal of programming event is to drive home idea that YouTube is host to ton of genre material. MTV Networks’ Comedy Central will stage its own online comedy week, April 29 to May 3, in partnership with Twitter — with live Twitter conversations and six-second Vine video snippets.

YouTube’s digital fest featured talent includes Vince Vaughn, Rainn Wilson, Ryan Higa, Smosh, Sarah Silverman and Michael Cera of JASH, The Lonely Island, Seth Rogen, plus The OnionCollegeHumor, Epic Meal Time, Rhett & Link, Epic Rap Battles of History and Funny or Die.

Week kicks off with live comedy variety show with mix of standup, sketches and musical performances, streaming worldwide on Sunday, May 19, at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET (with preshow starting 4 p.m. PT/7 p.m. ET).

“YouTube is the home of comedy for the next generation,” YouTube marketing veep Danielle Tiedt said. “If you like to laugh, come join us during Comedy Week as we celebrate the best of comedy with sketches, pranks, standup routines, sitdown routines, parodies, blunders, fails, live shows and unexpected collaborations in a way that only YouTube can.”

Comedy is natural fit for Internet video play, and popular short segs can quickly catch fire on social media. On Wednesday, Yahoo announced one-year deal with Broadway Video for exclusive rights to “Saturday Night Live” trove of clips dating back almost four decades.

Videos will be hosted at youtube.com/comedyweek starting May 19.

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