Rumble Online Video Site Takes on YouTube. Will Fail.

Rumble online video site takes on YouTube. Goes bankrupt.

Rumble will fail. Mahhhh. I just pissed in my own pants.
Rumble will fail. Mahhhh. I just pissed in my own pants.

I just got a reporter inquiry about a website called Rumble. It was created to take on YouTube head on (see story), and I think that’s about the worst idea for an online-video site ever (at least in 2014). I’m going to come off like an angry old man in this post, so try to imagine me sitting in my boxers on a rocking chair holding a shotgun.

Rumble will either change strategy or be dead in less than 12-18 months.

Its offering to video creators is so bad I checked to see if this was an early April Fool’s joke (please note 1-26-14 update from CEO, below).

  • Rumble: Because the world needs another video-sharing site for cats.
    Rumble: Because the world needs another video-sharing site for cats.

    It requires exclusive content. That’s a really bad idea if you’re trying to compete with a market leader that doesn’t require exclusive content. I  never suggest a content creator license exclusively unless they get a guarantee that offsets what they might otherwise make elsewhere. Even Revver.com new better.

  • It takes about 3-4 months before they provide analytics to creators (YouTube analytics are instant, and payment is monthly).
  • 60% of revenue (now that’s decent, but 60% of nothing is nothing).
  • No guarantee of views because there’s a limited audience using Rumble (although maybe some of its partners have an audience, and they’ll pull an intermediary approach- they claim some big partners like Yahoo!). Rumble’s CEO says they’re doing 100M streams.
  • No apparent advertisers using the site. They could theoretically solve this by letting their partners sell the inventory, but that would change CPM income … creating a Rumble advertising salesforce would take many months or years).

Rumble is founded by a bunch of folks who have been doing online video for a long time. Some at  successful companies, but some come from companies (you haven’t heard about) that got destroyed by YouTube. So will their vengeance inspire them to topple YouTube? Or is history the best predictor of success?

What they do have is a nice name. Rumble. Rrrrumble. Get ready to Rrrrumble. I was going to say they have a nice logo, but the play button is kinda owned already. Hopefully the founders, advisors and employees will adapt Rumble to find a better niche. Anything but trying to compete with a market leader without any discernable differentiation or advantage.

Mind you- this comes from somebody who makes money on YouTube, but who can’t stand monopolies. For amateurs making online video, YouTube is pretty much the only way to make money via online video. So there may eventually be an online video-sharing site that caters more to amateur creators. But I sure wouldn’t hold my breath for it, and resign not to make a dime anywhere else while they try to figure it out. As I told the reporter, I wouldn’t become a Rumble creator (under current terms) if it was founded by my mom and funded Chad Hurley.

All this said, take my advice with a grain of salt. I’ve called a lot of things accurately, but I also was rooting for Revver.com and initially saw YouTube as a horrible financial investment.

Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski clarifies the terms the online-video company is offering creators
Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski clarifies the terms the online-video company is offering creators

Note from Chris Pavlovski, CEO of Rumble 1-26-14

“I recently noticed your review of Rumble. I totally respect your opinion and enjoy reading various takes, although I hope we do not fail 🙂

I wanted to point out that we offer other options for video creators. The 60% profit share is definitely a difficult one for users to swallow (this is because all revenue is generated on Yahoo, MSN, and takes a long time to receive reporting, but its worth it). We also offer two other options for video creators. If the video is good, they get rewarded within 24 hours and paid within 14 days. Here are the options:

  1. up to $1000 for an exclusive video license, up front cash
  2. up to $250 for a non-exclusive video license, up front cash
  3. we do custom deals as well (for larger creators)

The profit share is the 4th option, but normally makes more than the above two if you can wait 3 months. We are currently pushing well over 100M streams per month on our partner websites, so our reach is considerable and many creators are happy with it.”

 

Blip.tv Deleted Me

Blip.tv closed me accountI didn’t care much when some of the online video sites retired “consumer generated” accounts, and killed my Nalts channels. Metacafe, Revver, Yahoo video, Google video. But I’ve been rooting for the Blip.tv underdog since its infancy. So when I learned today they deleted my account, I felt totally betrayed.

Blip.tv is now owned by Internet studio, Maker. They’ve never much liked me, unfortunately.

Here’s one of my early articles of Blip sharing ad revenue. An article about how it paid better than other ad-sharing properties. And one of my favorite blog posts ever… my experience with Blip.tv’s awesome customer service in 2006 when founder Mike Hudack actually answered my call during dinner.

Unfortunately many of my Blip.tv videos are gone for good… not uploaded to other video-sharing sites and not backed up. Whey they began killing some accounts I wasn’t surprised. I expected some of my secondary “staging” accounts at Blip.tv to go away, so I backed them up. But didn’t expect they’d kill my Nalts one. 🙁

Part of my Internet youth died today. Not since Revver closed shop has the internet made me so sad.

Et, tu, Blip? Et tu?

Blip.tv killed me after 7 loyal years
Blip.tv killed me after 7 loyal years

 

Bottom Posting Must “Die”

Web-standards advocate, Molly Holzchlag (molly.com) proposes, in a recent post, abolishing “bottom-posting.” I was disappointed to read that headline, until I realized she was not referring to blog posts about our bottom. In my case, I’ve been constipated for three days and I’ve consumed 3 bowls of cereal in the past 20 minutes hoping Mother Nature shall work her magic tomorrow morning.

big butt

Indeed, Molly may or may not be okay with us posting about our bottom or bowl movements (how about the chunks of undigested corn or the colors that result from flavored water-ice, Slurpies, Icees or snowballs?

No. Molly is talking about the style conventions for e-mails or forums, where new comments appear on the bottom.

  1. First, she says, we’re becoming extremely used to backward sequencing. Blogs do this automatically. Twitter does too. Second we have many tools now so as to retrieve and save threads. IMAP, for one. Gmail provides archives. All current, popular mail clients allow some sort of filtering and thread views.
  2. Third, bottom-posting needs to die a fast death (because of the) increasing access of email on small devices. It becomes absolutely senseless to have an entire novel sent when the message is simply “yup, I’m on the task” or what have you.
  3. The final reason that bottom-posting sucks is that long emails that require a user to scroll through what is sometimes pages and pages of information is physically damaging and actually very difficult to do for those of us whose wrists and fingers tire easily.

No word yet on how Molly feels about the whole toilet-paper “under” or “over” debate.

giant roll of toilet paper

The Daily Reel (TDR) Goes RIP?

I’m always the last guy to realize someone got laid off. Or someone took a new job. Or the company I worked for shut down 6 months ago, which explains the lack of paycheck and the movers trying to box my computer.

The Daily Reel Goes DarkSo it shouldn’t surprise me that months after The Daily Reel (TDR) apparently died, I’m starting to realize it. No message on the company blog. No new headlines on the homepage. Ads promote an event that happened in October. Heck I free, freelanced for them and I don’t remember getting a memo.

Everything just frozen in time like some of the homes in New Orleans even two years after Katrina. Can’t they hire a temp to turn the lights out?

Halfway through this post, I decided to do a Google News search. New TeeVee writer Liz Gannes was a full 5 days ahead of me in noticing TDR’s dormancy.

I have been tracking some of the alumnae, who are diplomatic about their former employer but extatic about their new gigs:

This reminds me a little of a video spoof I did about online video called Chapter11TV (someone has since squatted the domain name, which used to host a fake site).

The major lesson? Know what you want to be when you grow up. TDR, to me, started as an Entertainment Weekly of online video. Then it started hosting video podcasts, which I thought was complementary. What confused me is when the site invited creators to post their own videos (as opposed to using Revver or another provider). Eventually it was trying to become a community for online video enthusiasts, which gave it an identity crisis and made it, to a degree, competition with some of the sites it was covering. Its final act was facilitating a conference in October.

There were some smart folks involved, so I’m guessing the demise was a result of investor impatience and desperation. Sorry for the folks that set up Reeled In accounts at my urging. Want to do a pool for how long before the site has a 404?