To hear that YouTube is the most popular, most visited, and most content-filled online video site on the Web is hardly surprising. However, to hear that 20 hours of video is uploaded to the Google-owned site every minute is surprising. And to hear YouTube still wants more is nothing less than a shock.
YouTube has been getting rather a lot of stick of late. Mainly because it’s facing stiff competition from Hulu, the (at present) U.S.-only online video service. While Hulu deals exclusively in premium content, YouTube made its name, and continues to do so, with user-generated content. You know, videos of babies gurgling or dogs riding skateboards.
The problem for YouTube is that while legally-obtained content from media companies and TV networks is fully-monetizable and consequently profitable, UGC generally isn’t. Mainly due to the risk of copyright infringements occurring. And seeing as 96 percent of YouTube videos are currently estimated to be UGC, this is a problem.
But YouTube isn’t about to turn round and stop accepting user-generated video, despite recently announcing that there is 20 hours of video uploaded to the site every minute. Ryan Junee announced the figure in a post on the Official YouTube Blog.
“In mid-2007, six hours of video were uploaded to YouTube every minute. Then it grew to eight hours per minute, then 10, then 13. In January of this year, it became 15 hours of video uploaded every minute, the equivalent of Hollywood releasing over 86,000 new full-length movies into theaters each week. Now, 20 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute.”
Masses Of Content, No Money
Which means that since Google took over the site the amount of video being uploaded to YouTube has more than tripled. That being despite Google cracking down on the amount of obvious copyright-infringing content being added to the site. Out of necessity more than anything lest it faced more $1 billion plus lawsuits from disgruntled companies such as Viacom.
20 hours of video-per-minute is a mind blowing amount of new content being added to the site constantly. And it makes Time magazine’s recent allegation that YouTube was one of ‘The 10 Biggest Tech Failures of the Last Decade‘ sound even more ludicrous. If only more of that 20 hours of new content every minute could be successfully monetized and in a way which did more than just pay for the bandwidth being used then Google may just have a moneymaking property on its hands.
Because that is the problem as it stands at the moment. YouTube is making a substantial amount of revenue every year but it’s currently costing more to maintain the site than is coming in. Which is hardly a surprise with all that user-generated content being uploaded on a minute-by-minute basis.
Keep It Coming
Not that YouTube is complaining mind you. Junee goes on to say, “Thanks, and let’s see if we can get to 24 hours — a full day’s worth of video uploaded every minute.” So in essence, keep it coming, even if the public’s desire to share footage of their child or pet doing unusual things is costing the site dear.
And now YouTube is making an even bigger rod for its own back by turning on instant video responses in the comments section of every clip. Sure, Seesmic has been offering the exact same thing for a while now but then it has neither the traffic, the sheer amount of content, or branding power YouTube does.
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