YouTube Drops Hammer on TinyTube

Business Week writes about Google using its huge cash resources to buy their way into legal content, and making YouTube the best new friend of the old media. Apparently they are offering nine-figures in front of the likes of Time Warner, News Corp, and NBC Universal. Google already has Viacom and CBS singing YouTube’s praises.

“The reality is, if they are able to lock in major media [companies] for three years, then by default YouTube is the place to go” for Web video.

Shades of Microsoft! And while the company is trying to make all these deals, it is also dropping the hammer on smaller rivals, such as TinyTube, which has been asked to take down the YouTube content:

We want to maintain a good working relationship with YouTube, so when a Senior Manager at YouTube contacted us about Terms of Service violations we took the YouTube content offline. This happened at 10am GMT-8 today. There is no established timeline, and no certainty the YouTube content will continue to be available via TinyTube. I’ll continue to post updates here as the situation develops.

Wow, we have come a full circle, and the notice from YouTube, a company built entirely on copyright infringement, and other people’s content, seems like pot calling the kettle black. This indeed is strange, because for a minute I thought it was user generated content, not YouTube’s content. I can understand having to take down the content that is going to cost them hundreds of millions. Funnily enough, the Google Videos are now available, but as one TinyTube forum poster wrote, “I still miss the YouTube content… damn-it.”

As Katie had recently noted, TinyTube is a better way to access videos on you mobile phone when compared to the lame Verizon-YouTube Lite.

The mobile web site aggregates what it says are 9 featured video clips from YouTube sorted by “score.” They have choices like “low, medium, high, and streaming” to play the video and chances to watch more from that user or “similar clips.” This services seems like it will be a lot more true to what YouTube users want on a mobile phone, than the Verizon, YouTube deal.

Her review converted me, especially on my Nokia E61 (via WiFi). We will reach out to Google PR on Monday. For now, we are going to mourn the passing of TinyTube, and we hope it makes a comes back. And if there is someone at Google reading this, this is how you do mobile video – outside the walled garden of mobile carriers. Isn’t that what Google always does!