Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Protect YouTube, or ensure 'free' video sharing!

For a couple of months, my evening entertainment source has not been TV or DVDs. Honestly it's just been YouTube, and sometimes Google Video!

It's just amazing; this "video on demand" revolution. I am a big fan of the 80s, my favorite decade, and YouTube provides me with videos of every song I fondly remember from back then, and videos of the songs I listened to but never saw.

That's exactly why copyright holders are suing YouTube!

Having lost me, and millions of other viewers, I understand that TV empires like Viacom (owners of MTV, VH1 ..etc) are very scared of YouTube.

YouTube is delivering 100 million vidoes a day to viewers, how much of that is intellectual property is not clear, but Viacom estimates that it has lost 1 Billion in revenues from YouTube so far. That's probably an exaggeration now, but might be true in the coming years.

Maybe they should learn from the lessons of the past, that no one can stop technology evolution and consumer choice.

Instead, they need to sign an agreement with YouTube, by which they could share advertising revenue for Viacom content, or use YouTube to show previews of their top shows and generate more interest in their stations!

Already, the BBC has such a deal, and it's promoting it latest shows.

But it seems that the problem with Viacom is that it owns music station properties, and its music programming (whether shows, interviews) isn't the same as a top rated series like Lost or Prison Break which users must tune into a TV station for. Inciddently, it seems that some of the music property holders like Sony BMG are fine with YouTube, and have signed deals.

There must be solutions. YouTube and other video sharing sites, including ones in the Arab World like Clipat and Ikbis, deserve to continue to serve customers with the freedom of comprehensive content.

YouTube, and its owner Google, have a responsibility as market leaders to sort out this mess, make peace with media companies and property rights owners, and lay the right foundations for this booming online video revolution.

I for one, will be thoroughly disappointed if I can't watch my 80s music videos, or clips of interviews with these artists, and clips from the greatest 80s TV shows in Britain which I could never see as a teenager here in Amman!

This case will set the legal precedent that could govern our digital entertainment in the future.

If Viacom and other TV empires allow free video viewing on their own sites, without a subscription fee, then all that will happen is that we'll move our viewing 'channel' from YouTube to Viacom.com and so on. But, what's the guarantee of that happening?

We should raise our voices to protect our right to free viewing. Let them make money off advertising. It should be interesting to see how this story ends.

zanasser@gmail.com

6 Comments:

At 1:28 PM , Anonymous Qwaider قويدر said...

If you read between the lines you'll notice that it was corporate arrogance on Google's part that drove Viacom, GE and others to bash YouTube and google. One thing is for sure, Google got a little bit more than what they bargained for. And I predicted that way in October when they made the move on YouTube. Read what I had to say yesterday about this subject here: One Billion Dollar Slap!

 
At 1:49 PM , Blogger Zeid Nasser said...

Qwaider ... thanks for always being the first commentor on my posts!

So, you predicted this. Well, hopefully they'll sort it out!

 
At 2:55 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Allow me to thank Qweider too on bahalf of all of us who used to think that we do not have a life and then realized that such a thing as this Qweider exists and it made us look like the most productice, social and sane people alive.

Damn this qweider dud needs to give google some financial advice before they go Bankrupt

 
At 11:07 PM , Anonymous Qwaider قويدر said...

Thanks Anonymous ... You made my day :)

At least, the very least, I don't hide behind the veil of "anonymity"
You know where I live :) come by for some milk and cookies!

And by the way, people always came up with bright ideas, it's not monopolized by one or two people even if these people made it to the top of the world. I said my opinion and it turned out to be right .... Do I need to say more?

 
At 4:57 PM , Blogger Saturn said...

I wish if i can share my research on Best 100 Video Sharing Portals .

You can also search videos from this customized Video Search

Thanks

Jay

 
At 11:50 PM , Blogger BJ said...

Hey – since you’re a YouTuber, you might want to check this out… There’s a video company that’s recruiting
YouTubers and if they like your stuff, (and they should) they will actually pay you when your video gets a hit.
Here’s their link… www.flownetworkproductions.com/videorevenue.htm. It’s about time the people who make
the videos get some of the money instead of it all going to YouTube!

 

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