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Sony Takes on YouTube with Video-Sharing Site 82

thefickler writes "According to Reuters, Sony has announced that it will launch a video-sharing site in Japan as part of its 'quiet software revolution'. Speaking at a press conference in Tokyo, Sony CEO Howard Stringer said that the new site will be 'an opportunity to transmit user-generated video anywhere you want to, anytime to anybody, in a protected environment.' The new site, which will be called eyeVio, will be first launched in Japan, although Sony hopes to also launch it overseas should the Japanese version prove a success. It will be free to users, and the idea is that Sony will eventually generate revenue through advertising."
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Sony Takes on YouTube with Video-Sharing Site

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  • They can always design dedicated hardware to interface into it. New cell phones? game units? all able to use a propietary YouTube like thing. Possibility it seems at least.
    • by Xymor ( 943922 )
      Dedicated hardware to interface with only one unproven service, that has youtube as competitor that can be accessed from any browser? That's crazy even for Sony standards...

      It could be part of, or a service provided through Home. They centralize everything in Home: Joost like TV and movies, user created content(video, audio, text), internet radio, telecomunications, gaming, chatting, e-commence(like in second life), etc.... All services inside one virtual environment and then sell hardware to access it, m
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Verunks ( 1000826 )
      the article it's not complete, today sony also announced the new eyetoy for ps3 [] that can save video to the ps3's hdd and then they can be also edited with a bundled software, so they probabily want to push ps3 + playstation eye with this new site
    • There are hundreds of user-generated video hosting sites. Just today I was making this list [] on Wikipedia. My own longer list [] lists about 150 sites with video (mainly user generated) but there are probably a whole heap of others I've missed! And yes, there are Japanese competitors already out there: mainly [] and []. This will be no easy ride for Sony.
      • by chrnb ( 243739 )

        ...Japanese competitors already out there: mainly
 is actually Chinese, and 'tudou' means potato in chinese, go figure ^^
  • by Starteck81 ( 917280 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:20PM (#18891363)
    ...any videos of a lithium ion laptop batteries catching on fire?
  • Viva la? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Manos_Of_Fate ( 1092793 ) <> on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:20PM (#18891365)

    "This is part of Sony's quiet software revolution," CEO Howard Stringer said at a news conference.
    Revolution? Since when did jumping on the internet bandwagon constitute a revolution? Not to mention that anything that involves a press release isn't really that quiet...
    • Re:Viva la? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Wandering Wombat ( 531833 ) <> on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:38PM (#18891695) Homepage Journal
      That's the NEW definition of "revolution". Now since "revolution" means "going around and coming back", the bandwagon must be on a sort of a loop, and after the fifth or sixth pass, Sony decided to hop on. By now, though, YouTube's made friends with everybody on the wagon, and Sony's just taking up a lot of space.

      The next revolution... Sony decides to create dedicated software to let you talk to other people instantaneously, just by typing words into a computer!
      • Given Sony's background at consumer electronics, it won't be surprising if they put a direct link on their PSP, PS3, cell phone... anything has network capability. Basically, you edit and upload on your pc, you watch it on your gadgets. IMHO, that's a viable plan to take on youtube.
      • Hey, they could call it eye-M!
    • Re:Viva la? (Score:5, Funny)

      by FlyingSquidStudios ( 1031284 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @06:20PM (#18892255) Homepage
      The Revolution Will Not Be Televised! (Because it's in a Sony proprietary format)
    • didn't sony already jump on the bandwagon by buying Grouper? sure, two heads are better than one, but this seems a little strange...
    • Its a revolution because by 'download video' they mean you pay 19.99 shipping for them to send you a MemoryStick 256meg that will only work on a VAIO. You will then have to export the video file and the sound file to a CD and a minidisc. The video is in a non-standard mp4 format that only your Playstation 3 can play and the sound is an ATRAC format that requires a Genuine Sony Minidisc player. When the video starts on the PS3, quickly press the play button on your minidisc player and get ready for some pro
  • eyeVio? (Score:2, Insightful)

    oy, not only will the service absolutely suck, the name is ridiculous. How much money did they pay a focus group for that?

    How about a better name




    Just so it's crystal clear this is an also ran to the big player in the space and an attempt to take the YOU out of the experience.

    Besides, exactly why does *user generated* content need protection?

    • by Anonymous Coward
    • by DMNT ( 754837 )
      They wanted to name it as "eyeDiot", but the name was already taken. The userbase would have been then simply called "eye-diots" or "I-Diots" (spelling varies) and the system "I-diocy" ("eyeDiocy").

      Besides, exactly why does *user generated* content need protection?

      See, it's not the content that will be protected but it will be protected from having content. Anything that looks worth watching will be filtered.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by dorianh49 ( 988940 )
      I guess their marketing people passed on RootTube.
  • So (Score:2, Insightful)

    by UPZ ( 947916 )
    How is it better than youtube?
    • by jrumney ( 197329 )
      There are plenty of ways to improve on YouTube. Ditching the proprietary Flash video for a more portable standard like H.264 for starters.
      • Nope. Flash video is the only reason we have sites like youtube. Remember before it came along how hard it was faffing around with the windows media and realplayer plugins that never really worked very well. Now everyone* has flash and it just works, its great.

        *except linux people ofcourse, but surely they have better things to do than waste time on youtube.
        • by misleb ( 129952 )
          Linux has Flash Player. I believe it is even up to the same version as Windows and OS X versions. That's one of the reasons why Flash is such a great way of doing video on the web. Despite the proprietary file format, it is, overall, the most portable method of delivering video in a browser.

      • by misleb ( 129952 )
        What's wrong with Flash video? I find that it works the most consistently and reliably of all the ways of doing video that I've seen so far. I think it is great. So what if it is a proprietary format? You're not meant to download the video files anyway.

        I am working a site that accepts video upload (not a YouTube knock-off) and I just started implementing a transcoding system to convert all videos to FLV so we can quit our dependence on Quicktime which not everyone has. Flash is much more portable. Remember,
        • by jrumney ( 197329 )
          Flash Video is tied to the Flash Desktop Player. More and more people are starting to take their video watching beyond the desktop - portable media players, PSP's, PDA's, mobile phones, set-top-boxes on your large TV screen are all candidates for video watching, especially short videos such as found on YouTube, and none are served by non-standard formats like Flash Video. While there is a flash player available for some PDAs and smartphones, it does not support the video codecs used by youtube, google, atom
          • by misleb ( 129952 )

            lash Video is tied to the Flash Desktop Player. More and more people are starting to take their video watching beyond the desktop - portable media players, PSP's, PDA's, mobile phones, set-top-boxes on your large TV screen are all candidates for video watching, especially short videos such as found on YouTube,

            YouTube style video is exactly NOT the type of video that people want to watch on a set-top-box, mobile, etc. YouTube is something you view when you're bored at home surfing the web. Who'd want to s

            • by misleb ( 129952 )
              Oops, that last bit was supposed to be a response to your last sentence. Preview preview preview...
    • Re:So (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Hennell ( 1005107 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:48PM (#18891821) Homepage
      Its better for them because Google doesn't make money off of it, Sony does. Of course the advantage to the user is less obvious. That side of things seems to get mysteriously lost when companies plan these things, once they know how their money is coming they are happy. Some companies seem to think just because they have something new with x and y feature people will flock to it.
      I'm not wasting time, I'm rehearsing my retirement
  • by redwoodtree ( 136298 ) * on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:24PM (#18891451)
    You can only watch it on Sony Playstation 3 with 60 GB harddrive, or a PSP with the latest update, but it will check to make sure you're not running homebrew and , you have to provide your credit card number so if you ever watch anything copyrighted they can charge you the fee for the holder of the copyright.

    Oh, and you better be ready to provide your SSN because they need to be able to send you to collections if your credit card doesn't go through . . . and, some videos may have viruses, but don't worry about, videos can't have viruses.

    To upload, you need to buy a special upload program that only works with Vista!!

    I'm so excited about this.

    Oh, and ninteno sucks.

    • You're probably not going to have to bother providing them with your SSN and credit card because it'll unpack and install a rootkit that checks around for all that great personal stuff and sends it back to the mothership. That should save you a lot of trouble.

      Oh. And it's going to be battery operated . . .

      Just kindly send me your mother's maiden name.
  • This will make it much easier for Sony to sue most of the people using the site for posting Sony-copywrite files.
  • Too late (Score:2, Interesting)

    by memeplex ( 910698 )
    The video sharing game is won. YouTube has already achieved the name recognition and momentum to relegate all others to also-rans. The same reasoning explains why Yahoo still exists as a viable company despite Google providing superior technology and services. Yes, iFilm and other are still pretty good, but YouTube is enshrined. Sorry, Sony.
    • by Intron ( 870560 )
      First is always best. That's why when we think of search engines, we always think of Lycos and AltaVista.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by memeplex ( 910698 )
        Point well taken. Some site may eclipse YouTube down the road, as Google has Yahoo. But just watch any late-night TV show these days. "Already on YouTube," or "The Biggest thing on YouTube" flows from the hosts' mouths effortlessly. It leaps to mind because, as in politics, name recognition is everything. My mom recently asked me how to "log on to YouTube" after her girlfriend wanted to show her a video of her cat chasing a string or something. The Mom Test almost never fails me when it comes to cultural
        • > The Mom Test almost never fails me when it comes to cultural phenomena.
          That's pretty much the ultimate measure, brand recognition by people almost totally unknowledgeable about the field the brand is in. When people who don't really understand the idea of the web or internet but know they need to 'Google' something, you know your name can hardly get any bigger.

          In the same way that Mp3's is the only music format, iPod the only music player, MySpace the only social networking site and Photoshop the o
    • Personally, I don't use the social aspects of youtube, I just use it to put videos on my blog, or to look at videos sent as a link. It really doesn't matter at all if the link is to youtube or an equivalent service, as long as it's functionally identical and loads quickly enough. There's no barrier to entry and people, and there's essentially no reason to use it other than habit.

      It's also easy to imagine being basically functionally equivalent but better. [], for example, is a Chinese site that is

  • by v1 ( 525388 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:26PM (#18891477) Homepage Journal
    translation: "... with DRM up the wazoo"

    (collary: "viewable only with windows vista")
  • by Stanistani ( 808333 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:26PM (#18891481) Homepage Journal
    First Slashdotter to upload a clip of Google's proprietary content to this site wins...
  • I think rootkits! Yep, rookits and handhelds closed to homebrew developers.

    Sony, the one and only.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    After their last kick at a 'quiet software' [], you'd think they wouldn't want to go there.
  • by Lead Butthead ( 321013 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:42PM (#18891757) Journal
    Looking at the history of Sony products, it has never been a big fan of interoperability as evident by Beta, Memory Stick, UMD, BlueRay, etc. Is it any surprise it's going do its own thing AGAIN?
  • Just what I wanted (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Das Auge ( 597142 )
    A video sharing site from a company known for DRM and shitting on its customers!

    • A video sharing site from a company known for DRM and shitting on its customers!

      That's what I was kind of thinking.

      Funny thing that... I always make sure to ONLY BUY BLANK Sony Brand DVDs when they're on sale to use when I "Back Up" my original DVD's.
      Kinda makes me smile.

  • by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @05:51PM (#18891853) Journal
    Atlanta, GA - Benjamin Fentwitz, a 35 year old unemployed crash test dummy stand-in and amateur inventor has announced that he plans to take on the Big Three Car makers with his own brand new invention, a four-wheeled automobile he's calling the Wiz3UberPunchFugWugun.

    "At first, I'm just going to make it available in Cuba." Fentwitz said in an interview. "But watch out, 'cause in a couple of years, you'll be seeing Wiz3UberPunchFugWugun all over the place."

    When asked how it's superior to existing automobiles, Fentwitz explained "It's got... um... four wheels.. and... um... a steering wheel... and... and... brakes! Yeah it's got brakes. It's protected."

    Fentwitz further said, "Yeah, I know I'm a little late to the party, but you know, I think I've got a real chance of making it big."

    Attempts by Fentwitz to further harass media outlets were responded to with record flatulence, made on a top-end Sony media player.
  • Does anybody else smell a miserable failure coming this way?
  • by NeutronCowboy ( 896098 ) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @06:27PM (#18892347)
    Other people touched on it already, but I'll repeat it anyway: this is just another attempt by Sony to create the Sony-net, where only Sony systems (playstations) can connect to it, and where Sony has complete control over what is shown and how. Here's the key portion of the story: "We believe there's a need for a clean and safe place where companies can place their advertisements". This is how the business model will work:
    - Companies will pay Sony to play their latest ads, trailers, clips, show excerpts, etc.
    - Users will pay Companies (and Sony) to watch ads, trailers, clips, show excerpts, full shows, movies, songs, etc.
    - There will be cheap pay-per-view stuff, and expensive full downloads-to-own (complete with heavy duty DRM).
    - There will be some user-generated stuff, but it will come from people with a Sony passport equivalent and who can't be arsed to upload stuff to YouTube.

    I'm thinking it will be a cross between XBox Live, iTunes and YouTube. The YouTube connection is there to generate buzz (hah! I'm surprised there was no mentioning of the word 'viral' in the story), the XBox Live model is there because Sony sees how this is a money-press for MS, and iTunes is there because everyone's drooling over its market penetration. Except it will combine the sucky aspects of all its components and make them worse: paying for ads in XBox Live (I'm still amazed that MS pulled off that trick), DRM in iTunes and crap content in YouTube.

    Could it work? Sure could. Except that I haven't seen anything that tells me that Sony has moved away from its holy grail: to completely lock its users into an all-Sony all the time world. Which means that the DRM will be unwieldy, the network too small and the content too expensive to generate much inroads against the established powers. At least Sony isn't hailing this again as the next coming of YouTube... maybe it has learned after all.
  • crappy rap videos made by Sony PR flacks pretending to be kids who want a PSP for Christmas...
  • A member of the MPAA and RIAA putting up a site claiming to be the new YouTube, and inviting people to upload content.....

    "Here are the keys to the slaughterhouse, cow."

    Frankly, I sincerely hope they do sue anyone dumb enough to upload anything to that site :|
  • Galaxies ?

    boy, if its going to be anything about it - and as this is sony, i bet it will be - i feel sorry for anyone who gets used to that video service.
  • They will never be able to compete with YouTube, I dont know why they are trying, and I agree that it is a terrible name! Sony abanoned their amazing robot research (Aibo [] & Qrio []) to concentrate on the PS3, and now they're spending their time on this video sharing website that has been done before, probably better.

    I think that as a big company with lots at stake, they would have to be very careful about users uploading copyrighted clips, they don't want to get sued.
  • I can't think of any other positive with SONY starting it's own video sharing site. Oh, perhaps they can also upload videos showing users how to 'unrootkit' their PC's.
  • > Sony Takes on YouTube with Video-Sharing Site

    Considering how badly SONY has been run, they couldn't take on a 10 year old kid armed with a cardboard box.
  • This will just let them track uploaded copyrighted material, and who uploaded it alot faster then trying to ask youtube, etc.
  • "This is part of Sony's quiet software revolution"

    We're getting with the times alright but we wont make it easy for you.

    "It's an opportunity to transmit user-generated video anywhere you want to, anytime to anybody, in a protected environment"

    People like YouTube and Google Video have an awesome idea, the only problem is its not us! We want to milk it for what its worth.

    Unlike YouTube, which has drawn criticism that it tolerates user piracy and faces a $1 billion lawsuit from Viacom Inc. alleging copyright violation, Sony said it would closely monitor content on the service.

    We want to pull a YouTube but we're pretty confident we can get away with all the legal threats and fines.

    Such a model would appeal to companies looking to release content and to protect their image

    Screw user content, we want to be paid to host your shit and there are people willing to pay lots of money for us to shove it in your face.

    "We believe there's a need for a clean and safe place where companies can place their advertisements"

    Theres a slice of the pie for us but we want to eat the whole d

  • Should I laugh because it's always nice to see the light dawning in some corporate executive's head?

    Or should I laugh because, well, it's taken them pretty long to get the idea of trying a new business model that almost every successful internet company is using?

    Or should I laugh because the idea of someone abandoning the existing video sites for what will inevitably a pit of censored and heavily DRM'd content is so patently ridiculous?

    Ah what the heck, I'll just laugh.
  • which just by coincidence only Sony happens to make, for triple market prices.
  • If you would ask the common everyday Internet user which video site they visit, it's YouTube. They're not going to switch to another video site with only a fraction of the content that's available on there to begin with. AOL Video is in the same situation.

Nothing is finished until the paperwork is done.