I’m YouTube Bitch… and Content is a Hell of a Drug!
- Michael Eisner, 11/22/08, New York Times “After Disney, Eisner Finds a Home Online”
Eisner is right, but it will be YouTube. In case you missed it Friday night, YouTube (again) staked its claim as the future of media and the web’s second most powerful destination and put another nail in the television industry coffin. Not a bad night. By producing its first content and streaming it live to an estimated peak audience of 700,000 streams, YouTube has broken new ground. The previous largest web audience was likely AOL’s Live 8 with 175,000 simultaneous streams.
Some folks are downplaying the significance of this event. I will bet you at world’s no.1 & 2 most important online companies, Google and Akamai, they are thinking differently about it.
Since this was the largest live stream by a long shot it stands to reason that it was regarded as something of a beta test. It succeeded big-time. Like every web success, it will be scaled up and it will be scaled wide.
Ah, those numbers. The stream had 700k at peak. Within the next day that number had doubled with 881k additional web views from 37 clips (not including the Pre-Show). So the one-day number is 1.5 million. The one-week might be… 3 million? The one month…
UPDATE 11/25: Views are over 4 million after 2 days
UPDATE 12/2: Views are over 11 million after 9 days
This business model should finally hit YouTube pundits on the head like something from Wile E.Coyote’s Acme collection. I say in ten years (per Eisner) we might regard the word “television” the way we do with “mainframe” today. In the grand scheme of things, they have had an almost parallel existence.
Friday we got Katie Perry, Akon & Joe Satraini. In 2010 it’s not hard to imagine Google has rights to Bonnaroo or every show of Pearl Jam’s next tour. Those types of events would bring in millions of people. And there can be 20, 40, 100 events a day for starters. Who's to say there's not everything from Little League to the NFL? Surely Google could land Monday Night Football rights when they're up in 2015. And that's just the US!
You see what’s going on here? Redefinition. Revolution. Relevance!
Last but not least, Wile E.Coyote