YouTube turns 5 this month. To celebrate, the Google video site created a dedicated page for its five year community members. While the site didn’t really get popular until 2006, it is hard to imagine a time when you couldn’t watch a new (or old) video by your favorite band or waste time videos of puppies chasing robots online. In fact, it even feels like you’ve been able to do this on your phone for ages.
Since its inception, marketers have been throwing up their TV ads on the site, as well as creating user-generated campaigns on brand dedicated pages on YouTube to help drive brand awareness virally. Since then sites like Hulu and TV.com have brought TV campaigns to online video and video ad networks have turned banner ads into video. So I think it is time we stopped talking about online video as emerging media. Yes, it is still only a small portion of the marketplace and, yes, maybe it is still a new media. But let’s face it, video is five. It has learned to walk and talk. And is maybe even ready for first grade.