Monday, September 28, 2009

Afraid of youtube

We Americans love watching videos on the interwebs. I know I do. How many videos do you think are watched on the internet giant Google's two video platforms (google video & youtube) each month? Just from American users?

Well, in August, there were 10 billion videos watched. That's with a "B." In just August.

Comscore just put out a new report about online video viewing from the month of August. And it's full of neat information like that. You can bring it up here if you want.

I realized while I was reading through that report, that I watch a large amount of videos online. But surprisingly few of them are on youtube.

In fact, there's an incredibly small amount of videos that I watch from any of the companies listed in the top 10:

Google: It's for videos

In thinking through the videos that I have watched online in the past week, I came with at least 9 different website that I viewed them through. Not where the video was just embedded into a post, but where it was actually being hosted.

Granted, there some youtube videos that I've watched in the past week, and some hulu stuff, but most of the things I had seen were sermons from church services, or talks from conferences, or instructional material. And none of these were youtubed. Zero.

Those videos were all privately hosted by the churches where the service was, or the church/organization that promoted the conference or instructional material. I didn't think anything of it before, because that's how churches work.

  • If you want to watch a Craig Groeschel sermon, you to go 
  • For Joel Osteen,
  • For Rick Warren,
  • Bill Hybels,
  • Andy Stanley, you go to 
  • If you want to watch one of Tommy Sparger's sermons, you go to (a subtle yet important difference).

And on and on it goes in the same manner.

Youtube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world. If you do searches for those people, or Jesus or God or just about any other religious 'term' for that matter, on youtube, you get back some less than flattering results. And nearly all the hits are 'non-official' videos that people have taken, or edited from previous footage, etc etc. There are some official videos, of course, but most of those are 'clips' and attempting to get people to leave the youtube site and come visit the real site where they can get more information and full videos.

This doesn't make much sense to me.

It seems that somehow we've overlooked something. It's almost as if we expect people to know what specific place they can find the videos on religion/church/Jesus/etc. And that place certainly isn't youtube.

But youtube is where everything else is.

Youtube is where people who want to watch videos/search for videos go to find them. Again, it's the 2nd largest search engine in existence.

Why wouldn't we want to take our information to where people already are?

Why do we expect them to come seek us out instead?

Are we that afraid of youtube?

Or am I missing something?