More Q&A With Google Video Manager

As posted earlier, the new Google Video service offers live display of user contributed clips has gone live. Chris Sherman's story today Google Adds Playback to Video Search in SearchDay covers much on how the service operates. Below, some additional Q&A information from Peter Chane, senior product manager for Google Video, from when I talked with him about the service earlier this month, ranging from copyright issues to supporting Yahoo's Media RSS standard.

Why is Google hosting the embedded video thumbnails on their own site?

"When we looked at video on the web, there are multiple players and users are frequently presented with a dialog box asking them to make a choice. They don't know what to pick or don't have it [the right player]. The [video experience] service is just inconsistent, and some sites can't really handle video [they lack bandwidth or server capacity]."

Why isn't Google crawling for content like everyone else?

"We think most of the world's video content is not online, and we want to help bring it online, and that's where we decided to focus first," Chane said. "Some people, such as professional videographers....they can't put up a web site for video or they sell content on DVD. They see us as a way to get promotion for free." Chane did say crawling for content wasn't completely off the table.

Will there be ads?

"We're still figuring out what we're going to do on the ad side."

How are you checking for porn or copyright infringement?

"We do a very superficial review of the video," Chane said. "We thumbnail things and very quickly scan to see if it's porn or not and look for blatant copyright."

NOTE: To do this, scroll to the bottom of the page about the video you are watching. You'll see a "Report a problem with this video" link that takes you to a page like this, except it will have the video's URL filled in

What if someone finds copyright infringement or someone objects to being in a video?

"We'll have a feedback link and DMCA takedown form," Chane said. He also said there will be ways for people who may be unknowingly featured in video content without permission to ask that the video be withdrawn from listings.

What about support of Yahoo's Media RSS standard?

"We will support the RSS feed, and we'll crawl [what's listed in a feed]. We'll ask publishers to do one thing. We won't have custom thing that's just for Google."

NOTE: I haven't yet seen anything for this support posted.

Why not do audio conversion into transcripts?

"I haven't seen great success with it on a large scale yet. For the people who have transcripts, they've uploaded to us, and the quality is great. Once people see that if you have a transcript, you'll do better, more people will go back and get their stuff transcribed."

When will pay per video come?

"There's no set timing for that."

FYI, Chane also said that all video is being stored at Google in MP4 format, regardless of the original format, with audio in MP3 format. The formats were selected as being common standards that are easy to work with.

Want to discuss? Join our forum thread, Google Video To Gain Live Playback.

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Danny Sullivan was the founder and editor of Search Engine Watch from June 1997 until November 2006.

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