Joseph O'Halloran ©RapidTVNews | 23-08-2011

A growing total US Internet audience of 180 million Internet users engaged in a record 6.9 billion viewing sessions in July 2011 according to the latest comScore Online Video Rankings.

In its monthly comScore Video Metrix service, the data showed that each viewer in the online video audience watched content for an average of 18.5 hours throughout the month

The data also showed for the first time a look at select YouTube partners , revealing that Machinima reached 16.9 million viewers with the highest engagement at 1.2 hours per viewer over the course of the month. Maker Studios drew 11.4 million viewers, who viewed an average of 8.9 videos, while Demand Media attracted 15.2 million viewers.

Channels with particularly niche audiences included Maker Studios with half of their viewers falling between the ages of 12-24, and IGN with 70% of its audience being male viewers. In addition, men account for 83% of the time spent viewing Revision3's shows, whereas women account for over 66% of the time spent viewing Alloy's YouTube videos.

On a more general basis total viewing sessions reached another all-time high in July at nearly 6.9 billion, with Google Sites passing the 3 billion mark to account for more than 40% of all viewing sessions online. As ever Google Sites ranked r as the top online video content property in July with 158.1 million unique viewers, up from 149 million in the previous month.

VEVO ranked second with 62.1 million. climbed to the #3 position with 51.4 million viewers, followed by Microsoft Sites with 49.5 million and Viacom Digital with 47.3 million. Yet in terms of how long viewers were watching individual sites,

Just as 86% of the US Internet audience viewed online video, the average viewer watched 18.5 hours of online video content during the course of the month, with Google Sites (5.9 hours) and Hulu exhibiting the highest engagement at 3.4 hours.

Out of the 5.3 billion video ads viewed in July, the amount of time spent watching video ads totalled more than 2.4 billion minutes during the month, with Hulu delivering the highest duration of video ads at 409 million minutes. Video ads reached 49% of the total US population an average of 35.9 times during the month. Hulu also delivered the highest frequency of video ads to its viewers with an average of 40.4 over the course of the month and Hulu generated the highest number of video ad impressions at 963 million. ranked second overall (and highest among video ad exchanges/networks) with 674 million ad views, followed by Tremor Video (639 million) and BrightRoll Video Network (522 million).