Certainly, other online video services are charging their customers with certain fees for streaming live contents, how else can they make money to be sustainable for a long time to come? YouTube is a different story. YouTube is belonging to Google which gives the site to have uncanny advantages over other online video services. YouTube doesn’t need to make a profit, because Google itself is profitable. Instead, YouTube subtly acts as a catalyst of raising awareness about Google brand to its countless users. By offering free online video hosting and now progressing into live streaming for selected users and partners, but could potentially offer free live streaming to all — Google sees that YouTube’s prominent presence and charitable act that surpass professionalism in these particular sub markets (e.g., online video hosting, live streaming) can only help but not hurt Google. How else Google keeps on improving YouTube even though I suspect that YouTube is only making marginal profit or probably not making any profit at all? The latest improvement to YouTube is that Google is opening up live streaming to more partners and selected users. My hope is that all YouTube users one day can stream live contents, too.
YouTube obviously can charge users a small fee to stream live contents, but when it does that it will not be able to differentiate itself from other online video services. YouTube probably doesn’t want to allow other online video services to have a chance of making competitive arguments and appealing such arguments to potential customers. Instead of anything, YouTube is allowing itself to be beyond the fray. Without relying on immediate revenue from YouTube users, it can still rely on alternative revenues such as airing commercials that embed within videos, live streaming channels, and however else Google chooses to do that may bring the best results for Google in general.
If my deduction is all true, then I predict that Google may eventually allow all YouTube users to stream their contents live. When that does happen, YouTube needs to have strict user policies, because it doesn’t want to be the outlet for people to stream live pornographic and hateful and just utterly distasteful contents. I think the important of taking such a measure cannot be undermined, because live contents are far more powerful than other contents. In my opinion, live contents are far more interesting and engaging than non-live contents. What if somebody can stream live contents and allow viewers to interactively engage with the hosts as if everything happens in real time and space (i.e., togetherness of time and space)? That definitely will be even more powerful!
Perhaps, Google won’t play nice as how I have deducted, and YouTube will eventually turn off its bandwidth faucet unless users pony up some money. This scenario is likely when there isn’t any competition in the market that Google is involving with. The bottom line is to maximize the profit, because shareholders and business minds are naturally drawn to such conclusions. Nonetheless, Google professes to do no evil. As long Google is really sticking to the vision of do no evil, then my previous deduction probably will materialize and stick around for unforeseeable future. Bottom line, as long Google is making profits, YouTube users have no worry about continuing to be evermore creative in producing unique contents.