Bill Gates Explains Why Microsoft Would Never Copy YouTube.... Oh Wait...

from the knew-we'd-heard-that-somewhere... dept

With all the buzz over Microsoft's new YouTube clone, something kept bothering me, and I couldn't quite figure out why. Then I remembered. It really was just a few months ago that Bill Gates insisted Microsoft wouldn't do a YouTube clone. While this interview with the Wall Street Journal got lots of attention, most of it was for the idea that Gates had been violating copyright infringement by watching unauthorized content (Harlem Globetrotters movies) on YouTube. But, the key part of the quote was: "If we did YouTube, we'd be in a lot of trouble. First of all, people would say, "How do you make money?" Second, they'd say, what about all that copyright violation taking place up there. It's a neat site. I saw a bunch of old Harlem Globetrotters movies up there the other night, it's great." So, um, Bill: How do you make money? And... what about all that copyright violation taking place up there? Thanks.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    Brad, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 6:40pm

    Slam against Bill...but why?

    So I don't get it....this post seems like a slam against MS for...not doing anything? Because a founder visited a website?

    Serriously, there's pleanty to bash M$ over. The fact that Bill Gates watched YouTube and doesn't think it'd be a good investment (minimal return, legal problems) to try and copy is a slam against him?

    YouTube makes money by tying advertising in (esp. front page videos). MS wouldn't make as much money off the ads, and because everyone would be lusting after their deep deep pockets, every copyrighted work that ends up on YouTube would result in a multi-million dollar lawsuit against MS.

    The burden of guilt in a Copyright Infringement case is on the Infringer, not the specator. If I buy a shirt that says "Nike" on it, and it was made by a guy with a printer and an iron, no one's going to haul my ass into jail for it.

    People follow the money chain. Viewers (even bill!) aren't where it's at.

    And lay off, this isn't even something you can REMOTELY slam MS for. Not even close.

     

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  2.  
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    Person, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 6:47pm

    Re: Slam against Bill...but why?

    you misunderstand.

    he's slamming Bil for hypocracy: on the one hand, Gates said Youtube is nice but if Microsoft did that, they'd run into these problems.

    And now Microsoft seems to be copying the Youtube model without addressing the specific things he criticized about Youtube.

     

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  3.  
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    Howard Lee Harkness, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 6:50pm

    Looks like...

    Looks like somebody decided to comment before actually reading the article. MS is introducing a YouTube-like service called SoapBox. See http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/business/285609_msftsoapbox19.html

     

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  4.  
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    Mike (profile), Sep 19th, 2006 @ 6:50pm

    Re: Slam against Bill...but why?

    Brad,

    Please read the post again. We're not slamming MS for "not doing anything." We're pointing out that Bill Gates said Microsoft would never launch such a service, just a few months before they actually did launch such a service. It's the opposite of doing nothing. They did something right after he explained why it wouldn't make sense for Microsoft to do exactly what it did.

    As for how YouTube makes money and the issue of copyright infringement, if you read this site regularly, it'll come as no surprise to you that we agree with you on those points... but that's not the issue. Gates said Microsoft wouldn't launch a YouTube clone for those two reasons... and yet Microsoft still did it.

     

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  5.  
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    Erstazi, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 8:11pm

    ...

    I think MS is starting to direct itself in other ways, especially after Bill Gates has stepped down (I believe he still is stepped down, but maybe I am wrong). That company is guided in a different direction right now.

     

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  6.  
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    WCSTANTON DOTCOM, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 8:42pm

    On To FREEBSD....VISTA SUCKS.... STICK WITH XP

    this is exactly why vista sucks... Gates is wasting time looking for new products to nab.... look at myspace.
    here we go with YOUTUBE now??? I wish Microsoft would make it's mind already. Is it the biggest OS distributor? Or is it trying to steal other Ideas? Both?

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 8:49pm

    Or is it trying to steal other Ideas?

    isn't that concept what microsoft was founded on? steal other people's ideas and then cry bloody murder when someone steals from you?

     

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  8.  
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    David, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 9:25pm

    I must not understand.

    Mike,
    I don't see where you're coming from when you talk about the contradictions and hypocrisy. If someone says they won't do something and lists reasons, then turns around and does that 'thing' for those reasons, that is hypocritical is it not? So if a man says he will not do something because of specific reasons, then that's what should be paid attention to right? Basically, where do you see this man creating a youtube clone and ignoring the reasons that he has listed especially of you have not seen the final product. This is all speculation and should be treated as such, citing sources and using quotes would help less informed readers grasp the intent of this article.
    To the other people who have commented, let's try and stay on topic, this shouldn't be about your "oh so trendy" association with hating Microsoft because of your parents gospel and the things you've heard though hear-say. Most likely you're not old enough to understand what happened, but you're ignorant enough to run with every radical piece of information you may hear in blogs or post such as these. Please take the time to research and form fact based opinions.
    Thank you for the article Mike, I intend to look further into this.

     

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  9.  
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    jdragon, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 10:01pm

    Didn't they say the same thing about the iPod?

    Sure...yeah...copy cat cheap hack microsoft don't copy...

     

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  10.  
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    Mike, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 12:04am

    Re: Didn't they say the same thing about the iPod?

    Wow, this is article worthy... ???

     

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  11.  
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    Just Me, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 2:28am

    Interesting article and very interesting debate going on here.

    As for my opinion, I believe that Microsoft is the BIGGEST COPY CAT of them all.

     

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  12.  
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    james, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 5:29am

    apple copied from xerox, then ms copied apple, then linux copied unix and ms and apple, then apple copied linux and ms, then ms copied linux and apple, and then....

    this is a little thing called progress.

    however, both apple and ms (and adobe, etc...) are rather overprotective of their copied stuff, and for that, they should be (mildly) hated.

    and if a thing walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck... it is either a duck, or an ms clone of a duck.

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 5:56am

    Re:

    As for my opinion, I believe that Microsoft is the BIGGEST COPY CAT of them all.

    That model has worked out extremely well for consumers too. Let's hope they keep up the good work.

     

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  14.  
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    Sanguine Dream, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 5:58am

    What I wanna know is...

    when will we see a post about x suing y because y infringed on x's copright/patent/trademark of this business model.

     

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  15.  
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    Abby, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 6:32am

    You slam them for not doing anythin... u slam thm for doing e'thing.

    I just don't understand the great MS bash all over on blog 365/24/7.

    Check this why Soapbox is a good idea...
    http://baxiabhishek.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!8A8DB02C6AB8F265!1138.entry

     

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  16.  
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    Craig, Feb 3rd, 2007 @ 8:55am

    You gotta admit though, a person claiming to be anti-piracy pirating movies is a funny read. It just goes to show you how much hypocracy is in this world. Kinda like when Jim Brady's wife claimed to be anti-gun, and bought her son a rifle through a straw purchase. :P

    Don't believe me? Look up "Straw purchase" on Wikipedia. :D

    Oh, and most likely, Bill Gates would most likely win if a lawsuit was ever filed against him, because his money would speak *VERY* loudly. Just look at OJ Simpson.

    I'd be interested to know how many lawsuits the MPAA have brought against Bill Gates for watching the movies. I'd LOVE to be proven wrong on my theory that they only go after the "financially weak" in such lawsuits.

     

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  17.  
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    john, Aug 2nd, 2007 @ 11:35pm

    I like the soapbox

    its really cool and its interface is better than youtube. you can browse for other videos while watching your current one. they also have commercials, including the apple ones. don't get me wrong, i still like youtube. since it has more videos...

     

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  18.  
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    matilda2007, Nov 3rd, 2007 @ 12:08am

    Take YouTube Videos with you

    YouTubeRobot.com today announces YouTube Robot 2.0, a tool that enables you to download video from YouTube.com onto your PC, convert it to various formats to watch it when you are on the road on mobile devices like mobile phone, iPod, iPhone, Pocket PC, PSP, or Zune.
    Product page: youtuberobot.com
    Direct download link: youtuberobot.com/download/utuberobot.exe
    Company web-site: youtuberobot.com
    E-mail: support@youtuberobot.com

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 10th, 2008 @ 9:06am

    quit hating on Bill Gates the
    Billionaire

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 10th, 2008 @ 9:08am

    Re: Slam against Bill...but why?

    very very ture

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 10th, 2008 @ 9:09am

    Re: On To FREEBSD....VISTA SUCKS.... STICK WITH XP

    then why dont u make something better

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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