Can YouTube’s ‘Hulu For Music’ Vevo Succeed?

1 min read

Vevo LogoVevo, the Hulu for Music videos which has the backing of YouTube (and obviously Google) and three of the four major record labels, has now launched. And it’s kinda working. However, there are still question marks over whether it can succeed. And actually, who, why, and what is it for?


Vevo is a joint venture between Sony Music and the Universal Music Group, with the backing of YouTube – probably because it had to play ball in order not to lose music videos from YouTube altogether.

Rumors abound for months of a Hulu for music, all happening against the backdrop of the major record labels negotiating new licensing deals with YouTube. The plans were cemented in April and Vevo launched on time on December 9.

Languid Launch

The launch didn’t go particularly well. Oh, the launch party was both star-studded and a big slap on the back, but the actual site didn’t perform as it should have, with error messages and downtime being the order of the day.

Irritating Issues

The site may have recovered but there are still many issues remaining.

The content isn’t yet there, with one major (Warners) missing, and only 15,000 videos present at launch, a fraction of the number available to watch on YouTube.

Vevo is only available to those living in the U.S. and Canada. As always, those of us who just happen to live elsewhere in the world are left out for whatever lame reason.

But there’s a bigger issue than that.

Who, Why, What?

And that is who is Vevo for? Why does it need to exist? And what is it’s ultimate goal?

The simple answer to all those questions is, the music industry. Sick of seeing YouTube making the revenue from music videos, the record labels decided to do it for themselves/ And why wouldn’t they, as music videos are hugely popular and likely to always remain so.

However, Vevo seems stuck in the middle, existing in a no-man’s land with official videos available on the site but a distinct lack of UGC, which makes up a fair proportion of the music-related videos people search for and watch.

And then there is the fact that Vevo music videos are still available on YouTube. Which means Vevo could have just been a new channel on the Google-owned site rather than a site on its own.


The thinking behind Vevo would seem to be sound, at least in terms of the popularity of music videos. However, everyone already watches music videos on YouTube, and I can’t really see the majority switching allegiance to the new boy. At the moment there’s no justification to do so.