Google & YouTube: One Year Later?
Today it’s exactly a year ago Google shocked the world with the YouTube acquisition for $1.65 billion. Before that NewsCorp bought MySpace for $538 million. Last week we read the bullocks that Facebook would be worth over $10 billion?! I’m a holey believer, but have we really forgotten the first dotcom shake-out in 2000 people? Let’s act normal, before the next bubble will splash in our faces…
I love YouTube!!! Don’t get me wrong. But let’s look back at the year, since Google acquired YouTube. Lot’s of changes in this still fledgling business within this past year. For starters, I don’t hear many captains of industry talking about Tudou.com, the chinese video portal that is about 5 times bigger than YouTube? We’ve seeded a viral commercial at Tudou 6 months ago. Our server-park is still smoking, so many views Tudou generated in a few months.
Then there’s the Viacom. It launched a $1 billion copyright infringement lawsuit against Google and YouTube. Also YouTube seems rather slow on introducing new ad revenue streams. Why don’t I see sponsored skins around user created video’s yet. Great idea, since many brands don’t own content, but would like to skin UGC video’s based on tags.
Then advertizers have great brand generated content suddenly. How would Red Bull feel, if they could place a branded skin (sponsored layer around the video) around all YouTube video’s tagged with e.g. 10 kinds of extreme sports? This would be a great support to Red Bull’s sponsorships and events, right in their target group.
What if Break, Dailymotion, Heavy or MetaCafe give it another push. Metacafe is a site focusing largely on user-generated content over so-called professional mainstream content. But Metacafe is making a name for itself by paying users a cut of online ad revenue generated from their videos once they reach a certain traffic threshold. YouTube has a similar program for some of its online talent but it’s only for the most popular creators, while Metacafe’s program is open to all users.
I think 2008 will be an interesting year for our industry. Will new players enter the video era? Will we get an out of this world video concept, run by aliens? I would love to read your vision on the development and value of video portals! How will they monetize their eyeballs?