Some Quickie Thoughts On The Google Conference Call

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Okay. The conference call just ended. There will no doubt be lots of commentary on the deal over the next few days and weeks. Here’s our quick take on the call.
Search: Sergey Brin twice emphasized the “search” potential of including video. It’s clear that Google’s founder is still very focused on Google’s core competence. That should be reassuring to Google shareholders who might be worried the company is going astray with recent product developments and acquisitions.
Social Networking: Google has been only moderately successful in social networking. Orkut never really took off. Dodgeball (which was founded by a friend of DealBreaker) is amazingly useful to its users and is popular among certain cutting-edgeurbanusers but hasn’t yet deeply penetrated our broader cultural fabric. YouTube took off in part because of its social networking potential. Google seems interested in further penetrating this internet space.
Independence: YouTube is keeping its name and will continue to be run as a separate business unit. GoogleVideo is not going away either, and plans to further integrate it with Google’s main search will continue. So YouTube users probably don’t have to worry that they are going to have to open Google user accounts anytime soon.
Advertising: The potential for integrating Google’s advertising capabilities with YouTube were downplayed on the call, treated as definitely secondary to integrating the power of Google’s search capabilities with YouTube.
Copyright: This was one of the big things that led some, like Mark Cuban, to say that only a moron would buy YouTube—so much of the most popular content on YouTube is owned by others and posted on the site in violation of the owner’s copyright. Of course, today’s deal comes only hours after YouTube announced content sharing deals with Sony BMG, Universal, and CBS (and Warner a couple of weeks ago). With Google’s muscle behind it, YouTube should now be even more attractive to producers of video content who are looking for new ways to bring their content to users over the internet, according to the GoogTubers.

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