Google's YouTube: Who are the broadcasters?

Are YouTubers "in control" at YouTube?
Written by Donna Bogatin, Contributor

The official Google blog declares “YouTube co-founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen and the rest of the YouTube team will continue to innovate exciting new ways for people to 'broadcast themselves.'"

Chad and Hurley et. al may indeed “innovate” for YouTubers to continue “broadcasting themselves.” Their corporate parent, however, is unwavering in its determination to broadcast the lucrative professional, copyright protected by corporate counsel, video content owned by television networks and movie studios.

Google now rotates two logos at YouTube: vintage YouTube “Broadcast Yourself” and a new and corporate sponsored unadorned “YouTube.”


The YouTube “Broadcast Yourself” logo paid off  big time for Internet “kings” Chad & Hurley, but Google CEO Eric Schmidt $1.65 billion proud owner of YouTube is banking on an unencumbered by YouTubers logo to pay off big time for Google, Inc.

The “classic” YouTube “Broadcast Yourself” logo appears on the YouTube homepage and on the perhaps millions of “junk CPM” financed YouTuber video pages.

The television network and movie studio "Channel Partners" pages that pay Google’s YouTube bills, however, sport a soon to be Google YouTube classic bare “YouTube” logo unencumbered by the YouTube “community” broadcast yourself motif.

The most lucrative page of YouTube is its homepage and Google privileges corporate sponsors over YouTubers at its golden virtual front door (see “Google + Chevrolet: ‘Have a YouTube New Year!’”). 

The screenshot below shows today’s YouTube homepage promoting videos uploaded by  “YouTubers” Time Warner Cartoon Network, CBS television network and Columbia Pictures.


I recently discussed NBC's upload of the SNL iPhone skit to YouTube, asking “YouTube: What is NBC’s end game?”:

The NBC–SNL–YouTube video game continues, big time…

Three NBC Universal employees “troll the site every day” looking for studio-owned material and send more than 1000 take down requests to YouTube every month. What content are they looking for? What is NBC’s criteria for good vs. bad YouTuber uploads of NBC owned content?

Cotton decried the “video removal request game” NBC must play at YouTube. Is NBC also playing a content game of its own? NBC wants content clarity from YouTube. YouTubers also deserve content clarity from NBC.

Google is now reported to be embroiled in a legal contest over Fox content uploaded to YouTube without authorization, as fellow ZDNet blogger Larry Dignan discusses.

Google is proud that it has “chosen to ignore conventional wisdom in designing its business.”

Perhaps it would be best for all parties involved, however, if $150 billion market cap Google started playing by good “old-fashioned” content licensing rules, instead of trying to skirt by on a DMCA and fair-use powered no-fee required content acquisition business model.

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