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newtimes - 1 month ago

Origin of ordinary things: YouTube

YouTube is one of the largest and most popular video distribution platforms on the internet. It has more than 4 billion hours’ worth of video viewers every month, and an estimated 500 hours of video content are uploaded to YouTube every passing minute. According to Interesting Engineers, ‘YouTube’ was originally created as a platform for anyone to post any video content they desired. It was hoped that users could use the site to upload, share, and view content without restriction.  It has since grown to become one of the foremost video distribution sites in the world. Today, many content creators make a decent living by selling ad space before or on videos they create and upload onto the site. It was registered on February 14, 2005, by Steve Chen, Chad Hurley, and Jawed Karim, three former employees of the American e-commerce company ‘PayPal’. The company is headquartered in San Bruno, California. Shortly after the site opened on a limited (“beta”) basis in May 2005, it was attracting some 30,000 visitors per day. By the time YouTube was officially launched on December 15, 2005, it was serving more than two million video views each day. By January 2006 that number had increased to more than 25 million views. The number of videos available at the site surpassed 25 million in March 2006, with more than 20,000 new videos uploaded on a daily basis. By the summer of 2006, YouTube was serving more than 100 million videos per day, and the number of videos being uploaded to the site showed no sign of slowing down. The immense growth in traffic on YouTube created its own set of problems. The company continually had to purchase more computer equipment and more broadband connections to the internet. In addition, YouTube was forced to allocate more financial resources for potential litigation, as many media companies discovered that some of the videos uploaded to YouTube contained copyrighted material. With limited success in commercialising its website or containing its growing costs, YouTube began looking for a buyer. That is according to Britanicca. In 2005 the American search engine company Google Inc. had launched a video service, Google Video, but it failed to generate much traffic, and Google was prompted to purchase YouTube for $1.65 billion in stock in November 2006. Rather than merging the websites, however, Google continued YouTube’s operation as before.  To reduce the risk of copyright-infringement lawsuits, Google negotiated deals with a number of entertainment companies that would allow copyrighted video material to appear on YouTube and would give YouTube users the right to include certain copyrighted songs in their videos. It also agreed to remove tens of thousands of copyrighted video files from YouTube. In November 2008 Google reached an agreement with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc. (MGM), to show some of the studio’s full-length movies and television shows, the broadcasts being free to watch, with advertisements running alongside the programmes.


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