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Author Topic: How the big boys win the race for most popular website and rake in the dough  (Read 6907 times)

mouser

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For you paranoid delusional peasants out there who think the big rich websites play by different rules that the little people, here's some more fodder for your anger.

Recent documents from a lawsuit between YouTube and Viacom show how the companies vying to become the dominant video uploading websites (a battle which YouTube seemed to have won), knew quite well that to win the race to become the dominant video website would require focusing on illegally hosting copyrighted material.

So they weren't just content to simply turn a blind eye when people uploaded such copyrighted videos -- they were in a race to win the market, so naturally they did what any one would do, the founders of the site were busily uploading the illegal copyrighted videos themselves, in an attempt to boost the traffic on the site, and therefore win the popularity competition and make the big money.

Welcome to the web 2.0, where if you want to get bought out by google and make the big money, sometimes you have to do what it takes to inflate your traffic.  The law is for people in 2nd place.

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"Chen twice wrote that 80 percent of user traffic depended on pirated videos. He opposed removing infringing videos on the ground that 'if you remove the potential copyright infringements... site traffic and virality will drop to maybe 20 percent of what it is.' Karim proposed they 'just remove the obviously copyright infringing stuff.' But Chen again insisted that even if they removed only such obviously infringing clips, site traffic would drop at least 80 percent. ('if [we] remove all that content[,] we go from 100,000 views a day down to about 20,000 views or maybe even lower')."


mouser

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Not to be out scumbagged by YouTube, Viacom, the other party in the lawsuit, did their own share of dirty tricks:

Quote
For years, Viacom continuously and secretly uploaded its content to YouTube, even while publicly complaining about its presence there. It hired no fewer than 18 different marketing agencies to upload its content to the site. It deliberately "roughed up" the videos to make them look stolen or leaked. It opened YouTube accounts using phony email addresses. It even sent employees to Kinko's to upload clips from computers that couldn't be traced to Viacom.

http://youtube-globa...adcast-yourself.html

mouser

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You ever get the feeling that laws are for little people.. for corporations they are just suggestions.

higherstate

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Hey Mouser, 23000 posts, wow  8)

I think that it is true in most sphere's of life that successful people don't play by the rules. The rules were invented to keep the little people where they are and the successful people where they are.

A good example is the tax system. In the UK if you are wealthy you pay very little, if any tax (expensive accountants/lawyers + very accommodating government) but anyone on middle income playing by the rules pays heavily (up to 50%). I am sure most other countries are similar.

However, I am not saying this is good or bad, just making the point.
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« Last Edit: March 18, 2010, 09:40:47 PM by higherstate »

zridling

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Maybe those of us in what's left of the Middle class should form a corporation so we could get better treatment in court and from the political class!

nudone

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Maybe those of us in what's left of the Middle class should form a corporation so we could get better treatment in court and from the political class!

great idea, that's worthy of a sci-fi short story if nothing else.

Deozaan

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I think that you can become "successful" by cheating, but eventually it will backfire. I guess you could call it Karma.

But I also believe that the truly successful people/businesses are honest.

I guess what I'm saying is this: There are good and bad people out there no matter where you go. Some big corporations are bad (cheat, steal, lie, etc.), and some are good (honest, lawful, charitable, etc.). Some rich people are bad, some are good. Some poor people are bad, some are good.

As with most things in life, only the bad are considered newsworthy, so you think there are a lot more bad than there are good.


mouser

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Betanews has more: http://www.betanews....b-forever/1269029872

What makes me particularly ill about this stuff, is how much of the worst case scenario it confirms:

Quote
...
they operated YouTube with the unlawful objective of profiting from (to use their phrase) 'truckloads' of infringing videos that flooded the site," reads the opening passage of YouTube's founders single-mindedly focused on geometrically increasing the number of YouTube users to maximize its commercial value.
...
In a talking points document released today (PDF available here), Viacom cites various e-mails from various YouTube and Google executives, including YouTube founders Chad Hurley (CEO) and Steve Chen (CTO). Assuming these excerpts were not taken out of context, which is possible, they indicate that YouTube's founders were clearly building up a high-audience business with illicit files at their core, with the intention of selling out to somebody as soon as possible.

It seems to me that the current state of the internet is increasingly looking more and more like this:
  • A new idea catches on, whether it's ability for people to upload and share videos, or or whatever.
  • Huge amounts of money and venture capital pour into the on or two sites that have a chance of "winning" the battle to capture the most users, and becoming dominant in this niche.
  • Companies whose goal is to build a sustainable, self-funding site can be seen as laughable naive fools -- the people who win this game are not people trying to build a sustainable company -- the people who are going to win are the people who can grow at a rapid pace and have access to enough money to give everything away for free until the rest of the competition is financially exhausted.
  • These sites offer everything they have for free, with absolutely no intention of building a sustainable business model -- everything is free and wonderful in a mad dash to grab as many users and eyeballs and visits as conceivably possible, as rapidly as possible.
  • This frantic breathless drive to get huge numbers of visitors and publicity will be pursued at any cost, and it only has to be financed for a short period.
  • Then comes the payday.  The winning company, which has succeeded at grabbing the most users, will be bought out by one of the big companies.
  • After the buy out, the big company will either just use the purchased userbase to strengthen their marketshare on other projects, or will turn around and start charging for the services the site once offered for free once they have locked in users and locked in their position as the dominant market force.

app103

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After the buy out, the big company will either just use the purchased userbase to strengthen their marketshare on other projects, or will turn around and start charging for the services the site once offered for free once they have locked in users and locked in their position as the dominant market force.

Or it's a pure talent grab and they eventually shut the service down.

On the one hand, I am jealous because I don't have the skills or know the right people to be able to pull something like that off, myself.

And on the other I am annoyed, because those with the talent that have made a long term commitment to what they are building get stepped on by the giants that just keep getting bigger as they buy up more stuff. Even if they have a superior product, they can't compete.

urlwolf

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@mouser: it's even worse when what they build is made by the users. Example, metadata. They do the footwork, get paid nothing, and at the of the day their work is repackaged and sold to them again.

Carol Haynes

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How come Viacom haven't sued themselves for copyright infingement ;)

I think that you can become "successful" by cheating, but eventually it will backfire. I guess you could call it Karma.

If you are one of the little people this is true - but by their nature cheating is how corporations (PLCs in Europe) actually do business (and often it is the only way they make real money).

bleh75

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You ever get the feeling that laws are for little people.. for corporations they are just suggestions.

No doubt I LOL when I read this http://www.wisegeek....e-antitrust-laws.htm
Sad :down: No definition roflz... I think corporations play by their own rules always have always will.With that kind of money to throw around nobody can stand up to them.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2010, 03:40:33 PM by bleh75 »

iphigenie

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What's strange is that so many corporations end up acting like unsocialised 7 year olds

Paul Keith

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I don't think it's as conspiratory as that.

I think this is just a specific case of supply and demand. Even sites like Lifehacker and Download Squad tow the line by hosting lists of p2p apps but not actual links.

It's just a repeated case of the rule makers not understanding how the market works and end up padding the illegal black market.

Of course there is no such market in the internet that pays that's why often big business fail when they start to apply this phase of the issue:

Quote
...and start charging for the services the site once offered for free once they have locked in users and locked in their position as the dominant market force.

There's nothing really big market about it. Tons of websites cheat the SEO, use linkbaits, make top 10 lists, make short uninformed but reader friendly posts at a rapid rate... how is Youtube and Viacom worse for playing the game and uploading copyrighted materials?

They're just taking advantage of the demand caused by how the copyright banning promoted the appeal for copyright videos viewed with better convenience.

Believe me if there were no copyright and sites like Youtube uploaded the legal copies, they might not have gotten as big as say a site like Youtube but also allowed direct torrent series downloading but with warning labels (pre-breakdown Mininova if combined with Youtube)

It's just the opportunist taking advantage of the other richer opportunists. Viacom just didn't know how to play the game well but sites like Gaia Online, Gamefaqs.com, sites bought by Google, they tow that line too and are doing well even by making the product inferior. Best (or worst depending on which side of the fence you are), they have a sustainable website. 

sazzen

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I think that you can become "successful" by cheating, but eventually it will backfire. I guess you could call it Karma.

But I also believe that the truly successful people/businesses are honest.


You're very young, aren't you?  ;)

higherstate

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I think that you can become "successful" by cheating, but eventually it will backfire. I guess you could call it Karma.

But I also believe that the truly successful people/businesses are honest.


You're very young, aren't you?  ;)

 :lol:

I choose to agree with Deozaan.

I like to try and focus on life's silver lining because I like to feel good rather than bad. I think you see in life what you want to see so you might as well focus on the good side.

Not easy todo when you are old and bitter like me  ;)
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