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Monday, November 06, 2006

Google: Is YouTube Going Poorly?

Stocks: (CMCSA)(GOOG)

The media thinks that Google may be getting buyer's remorse now that it us beginning to understand how difficult the copyright issues may be at YouTube. The video sharing site does have a large number of clips from large media companies and some have been unpleasant about seeing their property being swapped all over the internet.

The fighting with the major media companies is the short-term bad news. On a more upbeat note, Comcast and Google may be talking about putting consumer created video from YouTube onto it cable video-on-demand service. YouTube rival, Revver, claims to be in negotiations with the big video company. Comcast may also start its own service, which may act as competition for Google’s video effort.

The Google purchase of YouTube is starting to look bad from at least two angles. The first is that the large content owners may not do deals with YouTube. They may just insist that YouTube keep their programs off the service and post the video at their own websites. The Mark Cuban school of thought is that Big Content will go after Google’s billions for copyright infringement. They probably won’t bother. They are better off getting their content off YouTube completely so that it can be a site for morons who want to post videos of themselves picking their noses. CBS can simply put is video up at and leave it at that.

The idea that consumer-created video will be a big money-maker on cable is mad as a hatter. It assumes that people watching TV would rather see videos of imbicles walking around in their underwear over CSI or The Lord of The Rings.

Fat chance.

Google isn’t going to be sued over the content on YouTube. It just isn’t going to make any money on it.

Douglas A. McIntyre can be reached at He does not own securities in companies he writes about.

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