Need to Know: YouTube

by Barbara J. Feldman on March 3, 2011

Three former employees of PayPal formed YouTube in February 2005 as a way to share videos with others. Many of the videos are from individuals but there have been a lot of companies that are uploading videos as well. Vevo is one of the media corporations that has made a big push with YouTube to start offering music videos and other things that are with a certain music artist or movie and so forth.

To watch the videos, you don’t even need to be a user. It’s free for anyone to use but only members can upload videos and leave comments about videos. YouTube was purchased just over a year after it debuted and now operates as a subsidiary of Google. It is one of the most popular websites on the internet and over 65,000 new videos are uploaded daily.

Right now there are close to one hundred million videos on YouTube and about 20 million viewers watch these videos each month, with some months reporting over a billion views in a since month (May 2010). Since YouTube is very easy to use, it makes it one of the user-friendly websites out there that actually gets a lot of users. It is so simple to use even if you don’t upload the videos you can search for videos based on whatever subject you choose. Since it’s so easy to use and there are so many random videos on there you can easily find things from the assassination of John F. Kennedy to the Apollo 11 moon landing.

What really helps is YouTube uses simple technology to become amazing. It uses Macromedia FlashPlayer 7 along with Sorenson Spark H 263 and then uses Windows Flash Player and QuickTime in order to run. These programs typically are already on your system so you won’t need to download a plug-in to make it work, it will run effectively on it’s own.  Basically what this means for the user is that you just have to click on the video and it will run.

If you have heard the term “a YouTube sensation” it is likely that you have seen some of the most popular videos out there. From Susan Boyle’s amazing performance singing “I Dreamed a Dream” to the original video “Me at the Zoo” with YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim on up to the  most popular video “Charlie bit my finger” at over 270 million views, and growing. Just about anyone can become an online sensation by posting a YouTube video. YouTube is a global world, allowing you to gain access to demographics all over the place. It is one of the only websites where you can literally post anything you want and anyone can view it. Depending upon the content, you may need to be 18 or older to view some of the videos or to upload them.

So how can you become a part of this amazing world? You can head to youtube.com and just browse through the large variety of videos that are out there or you can choose to sign up and create your own account. By doing this you can post comments on other videos, “like” the video which helps it to gain higher status on the website and you can also upload your own videos.

One of the things that continues to make YouTube a sensation is the fact that it is free. You can also subscribe to videos and users if you had a specific video that you liked. In order to start uploading your own videos, you need to be sure they are less than 10 minutes and less than 100 MB. This will allow you to have videos that are appropriate for the website. YouTube will remove videos that contain graphic sex and also violence and they do observe the right to remove videos that may be very hateful or offensive.

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Cite This Page

Feldman, Barbara. "Need to Know: YouTube." Surfnetkids. Feldman Publishing. 3 Mar. 2011. Web. 18 Oct. 2014. <http://www.surfnetkids.com/tech/1540/need-to-know-youtube/ >.