Why YouTube Shouldn’t Be Worried About Flickr Video

April 10th, 2008 | Categories: design, launch, networks, social media, strategy, trends, usability, video

Without even testing Flickr video yet, I can tell you why YouTube shouldn’t be worried about the industry’s newest entrant. When you think YouTube, you think video. When you think Flickr, you think photo. These well-known associations are embedded in the minds of users. A huge change in perception would be needed and I just don’t see this happening.

Flickr is a photo-sharing community at heart. If anything, the addition of video may divide the community. Potential backlash aside, video is nothing more than a supporting feature for this photo-enthusiast group. Flickr will never be the premiere video portal.

Why else will Flickr never overcome YouTube in the video space?

  1. YouTube has already accumulated a critical mass of content. In other words, why go anywhere else (Flickr video or any other video site for that matter) to find a given piece of content when you can be certain that 99% of the time YouTube already has it?
  2. There is some level of learning curve attached to any new service - in this case, Flickr video. That being said, people already know how to engage and navigate YouTube.

Interestingly though, both services achieved success leveraging the same principles in separate different spaces. When YouTube first launched, it was being hailed as the “Flickr of video” due to its tagging feature and likeness to the larger photo-sharing site. Both Flickr and YouTube can attribute much of their success to a simple interface, intuitive features, and a clean viewing experience. Simply put, they toppled the competition by simplifying the experience, a trend that I think we will continue to see.

One Comment

  1. shelly Says:

    Also: Why pay to upload 90 seconds of video when one can join and upload longer videos on Youtube (and elsewhere) for free?

    (I saw this on 9Rules, by the way. :))

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