Vimeo could have experienced a trajectory similar to that of YouTube. History has decided otherwise.
History is sometimes cruel. Vimeo arguably could have had the fate of YouTube if the online video platform had had more favorable winds – and perhaps more luck. This is all the more true since the service began its career before that of YouTube. The current video giant was created in February 2005. Vimeo made its debut in November 2004.
Today, Vimeo and YouTube do not operate in the same spheres at all. The former has over 200 million members worldwide as of November 2020, while the latter claims over 2 billion. With a major difference: in the case of YouTube, this is the number of monthly users, that is, the number of users seen on the service during the month.
Over time, Vimeo and YouTube have taken different paths. Vimeo emphasizes creation and quality, with a lot of artistic content, where YouTube wants to be more generalist. It must be said, like the point Liberation, that the site is stricter than its competitors in what can be put online. In short, it is better to be at the origin of the content so as not to have any surprises.
But there might be something other than video hosting that can bring Vimeo and YouTube closer together: their name.
An assembly and an anagram in the name
It is each time a mixture of two words: a pronoun and a reference to the video. For YouTube, it is an assembly between “you” or “you” (“you”) and the “tube”, which refers to old televisions equipped with a… cathode ray tube. And for Vimeo, the mix is between “me” (“me”) and “video”. Only small fantasy: the two words have been mixed, to give Vimeo.
Moreover, this is not the only peculiarity. Vimeo is also an anagram. Shuffle the letters and you will get… movie.
This story is told by Wired, in a January 2020 article that focused on the CollegeHumor site, from which Vimeo originated. Vimeo was created by two members of this site, Jake Lodwick and Zach Klein. It is also through this long portrait devoted to those who made CollegeHumor and Vimeo that we perceive their regrets for having missed the boat and not having been in the place of YouTube.
” We’ve always had a very confrontational relationship with YouTube, Jack Lodwick told Wired. They were chasing us. Josh Abramson, another on the team, said he believed YouTube’s copyright and moderation plans would sink the rival startup because he remembered it was permissive, which is where Vimeo is. was more demanding to avoid copyright concerns.
And then Google came in in 2006, shelled out $ 1.65 billion and closed the debate. He has, in Wired’s own words, ” eclipsed Vimeo forever And aroused many regrets. ” At the time, I felt like I had failed Josh Abramson told our colleagues. And to think that he didn’t make the right decisions at the time with Vimeo. Choices that ” prevented us from being YouTube “.