You’re the Person of the Year

Well, would ya look at that. Time Magazine named You the person of the year. By “you”, of course, they’re referring to anyone who freely generates content in this new age of social media, be it through YouTube, Digg, MySpace, a personal blog, or anywhere else. The meat of the story unsurprisingly revolves around YouTube, which is probably the one true success story thus far in social media.

You’re probably wondering why I didn’t point out MySpace, and to an extent I probably should have, but the truth is that social media is not only a conversation between users and other users, it’s a conversation between users and the people running the service as well. The folks at YouTube are constantly adding new features to the site and giving users what they want, while the guys at MySpace probably only go to the office once a week just to check to see if they’ve had any new friend requests.

The unfortunate thing is that MySpace, as the leader of the social networking revolution, could have been so much more if they’d stayed on their toes and continued to develop instead of just coasting. Instead, the big stories are focused on YouTube, Facebook, Digg and every other site not named MySpace, because they constantly listen to users and try to understand what they want, and then they deliver what those users are asking for. THAT is the magic behind Web 2.0, and that’s the reason Time Magazine made the curious decision to highlight that kind of unique interaction between user and company that the world really has never seen before.

Edit YouTube Videos With Scenemaker

Lifehacker linked me today to Scenemaker, a really cool new web app from Gotuit Media that allows you to drop in the URL of a YouTube video and then edit it to your heart’s content. If there’s a small section from a certain YouTube video that you want the grandmother to see on Christmas Day but don’t want her to fast-forward through the rest of it, then just drop it into Scenemaker and edit out all the stuff you don’t want her to see. It’s a pretty nifty little app that does a specific thing and does it quite well, just like Vixy.

Just like with eBay, MySpace and other success stories before it, we’re starting to see a bunch of new apps developed around YouTube. People are piggybacking onto the site and figuring out new ways to make money using it, and while most are complete misses, this one is actually a hit.

YouTube Adds Musician Accounts

Video powerhouse YouTube has added the ability to turn single-user YouTube accounts into Musician Accounts. Doing so gives you the ability to basically turn your YouTube profile page into a MySpace-ish page for your band. There are options for adding your music videos (of course), along with band profile info, tour dates, and links to buy your albums.

This could be a real boon for indie bands who have concert videos to upload. Not only will they be added into YouTube (and thus can be inserted into any other blog, social networking profile or website), but you have a single location to house all your video-related media for the band.

Cade Video

I've mentioned Cade on here before. He's my cousin's youngest baby, and he's probably the cutest baby in the world. I know that ALL babies are cute (to some, at least), but Cade truly IS the most adorable little thing you've ever seen in the world. What makes him even more heart-wrenching is that he has HPLHS and has faced more in his tiny young life than 99% of people will ever face in an entire lifetime.

My mom put together a video for Cade to show at church a few weeks back, and I digitized it and uploaded it to YouTube. Please take a second to check out the video and spread the word about Cade; the family has health insurance costs of $1600 a month for Cade, and they need as much help as they can get. A Katy business paid for a whole month of health insurance for Cade, and I'm hoping to get the word out there and get as many supporters as I can rounded up to help the family out.

Just watch the video. I've also got a photo album of pictures I took of the little guy.

More YouTube

I’ve suffered a major pulled muscle in my back, so I’m racked up at home until tomorrow afternoon at the earliest.  I’ll definitely be around later to discuss a few things, but I wanted to post a note saying that I realize that my comment comparing YouTube to drug dealers was probably a bit strong and perhaps quite a bit off-base.  I don’t believe YouTube has a business model nor can one be built off of hosting videos uploaded by users, because if there was, then Kazaa and other file-sharing services would be worth billions and not living in the mercy of the federal government and the RIAA.

The truth is, YouTube doesn’t really present anything that would be worth buying.  There’s tagging, which is all the rage these days (and for good reason), but outside of that, there’s nothing YouTube has that any big media or advertising player would need to pay for.  Yes, you can serve ads on top of those videos, but it’s only going to be a matter of time before conglomerates like NBC get tired of seeing YouTube profit from their content.

If YouTube only allowed the uploading of personal videos and commercial stuff was highly policed, then I could see something becoming of it. But it’s just a web-based version of BitTorrent or Kazaa, and we all know how the music and movie industries look at those two companies.