Metacafe Gives Viewers Wikipedia-Like Editing Control of Videos

It’s maddening when a creator tricks viewers with misleading thumbnails, titles, tags and descriptions. Until now, we’ve counted on the website’s search engine to solve that problem. But even YouTube’s Google-like sophistication still opens the door to tricks by Viral Video Villians.

Google learns from its users, and I imagine the YouTube search engine quietly gives primacy to videos that meet criteria we never see… such as open rate, duration of average view, related videos, and other metrics that YouTube can track to determine if the video is perceived as relevant or “good.”

Metacafe — without the funding or mother Google to help — has created a clever alternative. It’s giving edit rights to the viewer in true Wiki style. Just as anyone can edit a Wikipedia entry, Metacafe viewers can now edit the title, tags, description and even flag misleading thumbnails or duplicates (I flagged a “Farting in Public” ripoff just now). This is hard to explain, and a video is worth a million views. Watch Sherry in the video here to see how it works. I love this demo and not just because I make a surprise cameo.

I hope Metacafe doesn’t allow its creators to switch the hosts of it’s Metacafe Unfiltered series? Imagine how much better you could make this interview with KipKay, who has made more than $100,000 in advertising revenue on the website.

This begs a lot of questions. I can report a misleading thumbnail (the image you see representing a video before you play it), for instance, but I suspect human intervention is required, and perhaps that requires a few people reporting it. I can edit someone else’s video description, which introduces some risks of abuse initially (for instance, I could add my name to popular video tags but I’m sure it would erode a trust score and have little benefit to me). Ultimately the community will police the community, and that’s theoretically better and less expensive than editors or complex algorithms.


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Author: Nalts

Hi. I'm Nalts.

10 thoughts on “Metacafe Gives Viewers Wikipedia-Like Editing Control of Videos”

  1. I loved the 12 year-old, non-English-speaking video reviewers and pimply-faced leets comments (not to mention the constant technical problems). How much more am I gonna love hormone retards editing my video text?

  2. I think it’ll create wars, unless they say they will trace your IP and then follow through, but hard to do that with a proxy and fake accounts.

    I’m surprised google hasn’t installed the image finder to deal with some of the thumbnails. Actually, I’m surprised someone isn’t sitting there all day looking at the front page deleting away at all the sex and anime.
    Not that I want to squash free speech, I’m just surprised.

  3. Although I (and I am sure marilyn) would like the ability to correct people’s spelling on some videos, I think in the long run this is a recipe for disaster, at least if it becomes a feature of youtube. people will do all kinds of bad shit with it. me included.

  4. This will be chaos. It seems the only people on metacafe are haters, and it;s obvious that they are only going to change to title and descriptions to things like “gaye guy iz gaye lulz” or “in dis video im gaye and retahded lulz”. Call me cynical, but in my brief experience with Metacafe, I never even met one pleasant person, or read one comment that wasn’t demoralizing, and mean, and I can pretty much tell now that the community is going to use this feature in the worst way possible. I might be wrong, though, who knows. I haven’t been on metacafe for a long time, because I hate it almost as much as I hate Break.com.

    Does anybody know how to close an account on that website? I haven’t been able to figure it out, and I would really REALLY like to, so it would stop coming up when I google myself.

  5. I’m wryly disappointed with metacafe, I just close two accounts on youtube because I was seek of reading hate comments and getting hate mail and I always try to be as polite as I can when I comment something, I used to think that metacafe had more polite people than youtube … I guess I was wrong, both suck on that area. Its like if the frustration of the whole world whore being exorcized throw hate comments on the video sharing sites.

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