Some websites feel as if the Internet was designed with them as a planned fixture, weaving seamlessly through websites and making so much sense it’s hard to imagine an Internet without them. One of those sites is YouTube, the video hosting site that is now ten years old.
Currently, YouTube stands as a behemoth of video hosting like no other. It had its own teething problems, though, with many people at one point believing YouTube had no value, was drain for money, and required too much money and infrastructure to make the site work. Google saw the potential in YouTube, and had more than enough funds to spend on what was needed.
YouTube in the early years of it existence had revenue problems. Bandwidth was a massive money pit, as were legal battles over copyright infringements (And battles on what constituted copyright. Did two people playing video games posting a video of them playing a game constituted content rights being broken? Or did a person performing a cover of a song mean the site was enabling content being stolen and profited from?). While many naysayers were critiquing YouTube’s future, Google stepped in. Google had the infrastructure set up already to minimise bandwidth costs, and was able to strike deals with content creators and owners. YouTube was obviously a place were users were viewing content; it was a place that was helping to advertise musicians, artists, movies from both amateurs and professionals.
The denizens of the Internet wanted YouTube, and now days it seems as if people need YouTube. Content creators and users often don’t see eye-to-eye on how content should be delivered. Before YouTube, video hosting online was an amount of effort not worth the cost. A Webmaster had to host their own video, using their own servers, had to deal with different file formats (Due to there being three different online video standalone players, Real Player, Quicktime and Window’s Media Player.), weren’t able to embed video on different webpages easily, if at all. Users had to download the video file completely, whatever size it was, and then hoped it worked on the media player they used.
The way was open for a website, if they could work out how to make a profit. The audience for video was already there, and the amount of content creators and content created for YouTube is phenomenal.
There are a billion users, 61 different languages, 12 days of video uploaded every minutes, almost 50 years of video put on YouTube each day, and in the last year the number of users rose by 50%.
Happy first decade, YouTube.