Can you remember a time before YouTube?!
I can’t either, which is surprising since YouTube is only 10 years old today. It was founded by Steve Chen, Chad Hurley and Jawed Karim, all former employees of PayPal, in February 2005 and released to the public in April. YouTube was purchased by Google for US$1.65 billion in November 2006. Not a bad payday, although YouTube is now valued around US$26-40 billion!
Reportedly, it was Karim who came up with the idea of a video-sharing site after the 2004 Janet Jackson ‘wardrobe malfunction’ during the Super Bowl halftime show and the Asian tsunami. He struggled finding videos of either of those events online and at a dinner party he mentioned his idea to Chen and Hurley, and the rest is history.
The first video was uploaded 10 years ago today, on 23 April 2005, titled ‘Me at the zoo’.
YouTube’s social impact over the past decade cannot be underestimated. It revolutionised broadcasting by socialising it and becoming the Gutenberg Press of video.
Today over a billion people use YouTube and over 300 hours of video are uploaded every minute.
Happy Birthday YouTube and thanks for the memories!
Here are a few of my all time favourite YouTube videos, a couple of ‘ancient’ classics, and a more recent addition: