Why Was YouTube Created?- Origin, History, and Facts

Ashley | 04 - 02 - 2021

Today, YouTube is one of the most popular video distribution platforms globally, and thousands of people have a profitable career with it. But did you know YouTube was actually meant to be a video-dating website?

Let’s find out more about YouTube history, origin, and related facts. 

History of YouTube

What was YouTube initially created to do? Currently, YouTube has become a platform to watch videos on almost everything from music videos to make-up tutorials. But when it was first launched in 2005, it had a different aim of video-dating. Yes, YouTube started as a dating site.

Where Is the Headquarters of YouTube Located?
  • A. San Carlos
  • B. Woodside
  • C. Colma
  • D. San Bruno

On February 14, 2005(Valentine’s Day), YouTube’s domain name was registered by three former employees of PayPal, an American e-commerce company. 

Who Are the Founders of YouTube? 

Creators of YouTube– Steve Chen, Jawed Karim, and Chad Hurley 

What Was the Original Purpose of YouTube? 

Was YouTube a dating site? Steve Chen, co-founder of YouTube, says that they thought dating was their obvious choice. However, the internet users did not seem to agree. He mentioned that it was originally designed for netizens to find their better half. Yes, it had an option for people to upload videos talking about their future partners. Currently, the company is headquartered in San Bruno, California. 

Co-founder Jawed Karim also mentioned the romantic slogan of YouTube- “Tune in, Hook up.” 

However, no user came forward to upload videos for five days straight. Though they posted Craigslist ads in Los Angeles and Las Vegas offering a woman $20 to upload videos, no person turned up. 

They did not want their app to be a flop. Hence, Steve Chen, Jawed Karim, and Chad Hurley came up with another different strategy. 

Change in-game plan; In May 2005, there was a revamp. The beta version of YouTube was released and became open to people uploading any videos. They thought that people might love sharing their “home videos.”

Karim uploaded a video called ‘Me At The Zoo’. This 19 seconds video of Karim at the San Diego Zoo talking about elephants became the first official video to be uploaded on YouTube. 

  • After the revamp, the site was attracting around 30,000 visitors each day. 
  • In September 2005, YouTube managed to get a million views in a Nike ad where a Brazillian soccer player Ronaldinho received a pair of Golden Boots. 
  • It was officially launched on December 15, 2005, and had around 2 million views per day.
  • The views gradually increased and by 2006 January and had more than 25 million views per day. 

The uploads and views started to increase, and people started to show more interest in the site. 

Due to tremendous growth, the company had to purchase many other computer equipments and broadband connections to the internet. The company faced another problem as many videos were uploaded that contained copyrighted material. Hence, YouTube was looking for buyers. 

This is the time when Google Inc. introduced a video service named Google Video. Fortunately or Unfortunately, due to its terrible failure, Google purchased YouTube with an acquisition of $1.65 billion in stock in 2006. 

However, there were no changes made to the website. Google started to follow the operation of YouTube as before. 

After purchasing YouTube, a few additional features were added including, 

  • Allowing YouTube copyrighted video material to appear on YouTube.
  • Allowing the users to include certain copyrighted songs in their videos. 
  • Agreeing to remove thousands of copyrighted video files from YouTube. 

In November 2008 after an agreement with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc. in 2008, users were allowed to watch full-length videos and movies with ads running alongside.

How Was the Idea of Creating YouTube for Sharing Videos Born?

Each co-founder has got a story to tell us on how they got the idea of making YouTube a place to upload and share videos. 

Hurley and Chen said that the idea was born when they found it hard to share videos at a dinner party.

Karim said that he thought of creating YouTube as he could not find viral videos such as the Indian Ocean tsunami and Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction during the Super Bowl of 2004.

This is the journey of YouTube. YouTube has had gradual and constant growth in a concise time, and its success does not seem to fade away anytime soon. 

Do you know what one of the founders of YouTube do now? Currently, Chen launched a live-video startup named Nom, which is exclusively created for professional and amateur chefs for live streaming while cooking and chatting with their viewers. 

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