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The Internet Media

Search Battle Heading to Video 100

loid_void wrote to mention a Wired story covering the video search battle between the major portals. From the article: "As millions of broadband subscribers who missed a wardrobe-malfunction moment on TV can attest, the internet can be a convenient resource for finding much-talked-about events on video. Large net portals and a handful of smaller sites are looking to change that. In recent weeks, Yahoo, Google and MSN have each rolled out services designed to make it easier to upload or locate video online. The portals' rollouts come as a handful of startups and independent film sites are creating tools to make putting video online nearly as simple as publishing text."
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Search Battle Heading to Video

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  • Heh (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    "the internet can be a convenient resource for finding much-talked-about events on video. Large net portals and a handful of smaller sites are looking to change that."

    Seems a bit poorly worded to me.
    • "As millions of broadband subscribers who missed a wardrobe-malfunction moment on TV can attest, the internet can be a convenient resource for finding much-talked-about events on video."

      I was confused by the first part of that sentence. It makes it sound like having broadband caused people to miss the wardrobe malfunction.
    • Re:Heh (Score:2, Funny)

      by Construct X ( 582731 )
      Hey, give us Americans a break, will ya?!
    • It would have made much more sense had the poster included the previous sentence. From the article:

      "But until recently, internet users who don't patronize peer-to-peer sites had few options for tracking down video content outside of entering a query in a standard search box. Large net portals and a handful of smaller sites are looking to change that."

    • What, no one uses Altavista Video search? It's been around for years.
    • No, it's accurate.

      Come on, DRM technology, copyright banter. They don't want it to be more convenient. They want it to be impossible, so they can sell it back to you :-)
  • by t_allardyce ( 48447 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:28PM (#12324888) Journal
    I think we can all agree this has just one application: more porn.
    • by dreamchaser ( 49529 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:38PM (#12324945) Homepage Journal
      What if Mr. Goat-Se or something even worse gets a hold of a video camera!!!
      • by Jeremi ( 14640 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:46PM (#12324979) Homepage
        What if Mr. Goat-Se or something even worse gets a hold of a video camera!!!


        A good search engine will reliably steer people towards what they are looking for ... so if they are looking for Mr. Goat-Se, they'll get him, and if they aren't looking for him, they won't.


        If people who aren't looking for Mr. Goat-Se end up seeing him "on accident", that's a sign that the search engine sucks.

    • by John Seminal ( 698722 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:59PM (#12325045) Journal
      I think we can all agree this has just one application: more porn.

      I see the potential for the greatest abuse with a video search engine. Just like bad wesbites use meta-tags and other dirty tricks to get high hits, I can see the same thing with video. But where you can protect yourself against spyware websites by turning off active-x and the such, how do you protect yourself against video. You click on the mpeg and boom, malware.

      We need a sandbox for this

      Recently, Yahoo launched a beta version of a service called Media RSS that lets anyone with footage submit videos for distribution

      How can Yahoo check the content of what is sumbitted? Is there some kind of review?

      What happens if NBC decides the "wardrobe malfunction" is their copywrited material and demands it be taken down. Will these searchs make it easier to take down content?

      • They can check and handle things in exactly the same way as the normal regular search engine.

        Wait until a complaint comes in and deal with it then.

        They don't currently take down every generic subject noticed by corporations, so what makes you think they will start now?

        The search engine companies aren't stupid, and are certainly currently capable of handling indexes with multi billion webpage entries, some of which are already video.

        Overblown worry for nothing.

        Video is no more dangerous than any other f
    • http://www.alltheweb.com/ [alltheweb.com] works well for me. It's video scearch turns up what I'm looking for and I like it's picture scearch system better than google's
  • by llamaluvr ( 575102 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:31PM (#12324905) Journal
    As millions of broadband subscribers who missed a wardrobe-malfunction moment on TV can attest, the internet can be a convenient resource for finding much-talked-about events on video.

    Finding videos on the internet is easy.

    Large net portals and a handful of smaller sites are looking to change that.

    So they're going to make it harder?

    In recent weeks, Yahoo, Google and MSN have each rolled out services designed to make it easier to upload or locate video online.

    But they're going to do that by making it easier?

    Eighth post?
  • Changing Fast (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Jozer99 ( 693146 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:32PM (#12324912)
    I am in a band, and I am also in charge of our website. When I wanted to publish a music video just two months ago, there was NOWHERE that would host it for me. I ended up having to apply for a membership to an independant film online community, and encode my video down to a teeny postage stamp sized thing. If I were doing it today, there are half a dozen site that would host it for free, in high quality DIVX glory.
    • I am in a band, and I am also in charge of our website. When I wanted to publish a music video just two months ago, there was NOWHERE that would host it for me. I ended up having to apply for a membership to an independant film online community, and encode my video down to a teeny postage stamp sized thing. If I were doing it today, there are half a dozen site that would host it for free, in high quality DIVX glory.

      Huh? WTF happened in the last two months? Is this 1998 again?

      • The last two months, thats right. Since then OurMedia has been announced, along with a bunch of other services. So I guess it is 1998 again. Break out your Tamagatchis and your Backstreet Boys albums, to play on your brand new PENTIUM IIIs!!!
    • Re:Changing Fast (Score:3, Informative)

      by boarder8925 ( 714555 )
      Here's a free host from the people who brought us the Internet Archive:

      OurMedia [ourmedia.org].
      We provide free storage and free bandwidth for your videos, audio files, photos, text or software. Forever. No catches.
  • Good... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by skwirlmaster ( 555307 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:34PM (#12324922)

    Besides being heavily abused by self abusers, this will have a few legitimate functions.

    All those streaming events that happened a while back.. You know the ones you wanted to watch, but for some reason couldn't will be that much easier to find.

    Also, sites that archive important Social events on video will get more hits. I know I have given up after trolling through a few dozen pages of google results. Hopefully you can find a few sources so you won't have to settle for one level of quality, like for JFK's assasination or whatever you need for whatever you need it for.

    Really though, porn. Lots of p0rn. Sex is still in the top five searches...

  • by MoralHazard ( 447833 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:37PM (#12324939)
    This may seem off-topic at first, but bear with me...

    I have to admit, I've got a lot of sympathy for people who don't want to see particular things on TV--nudity, violence, whatever. I mean, I don't have a problem with it, and I don't think most content is socially harmful, but my preference not to be subjected to shit-sex videos is the same as some Mormon's preference not to see Janet Jackson's nipples.

    That's the problem, though--broadcast TV is defined as a "public" medium, partly because everybody can and does receive it in the clear, and partly because (in the US and Canada, at least) spectrum rights are public property, and as such must serve the public interests, meaning that the content on those waves shouldn't be terribly offensive to many people.

    But I really, REALLY dislike the idea of government-appointed (or even elected) censors dictating what can go on the air, or imposing after-the-fact fines when broadcasters step out of line.

    So I say, fuck broadcasting. Go radical--eliminate the concept of broadcast TV, as we know it. Practical transition problems aside, this could solve a lot of problems. Give those frequencies up to metropolitan-area data transmissions, and get those people online. With the combination of:

    1) fast, cheap, ubiquitous Internet access,

    2) content providers offering TV-similar video online (streaming TV shows instead of broadcasting them),

    3) effective and comprehensive video search capabilities that work at least as well as mid-1990s text search engines.

    On the Internet, it's a lot easier to see what you want and avoid what you dislike. The Mormons get their wholesome family crud, and I get my skin flicks and pot jokes. Everybody's happy!
    • by Jeremi ( 14640 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:50PM (#12325003) Homepage
      On the Internet, it's a lot easier to see what you want and avoid what you dislike. The Mormons get their wholesome family crud, and I get my skin flicks and pot jokes. Everybody's happy!


      I like your solution, and I think it will happen eventually, but it's much more politically charged than you realize. If you think that everyone will be happy when it's possible for anyone to get "shit sex videos" on demand (even if they themselves never see them), you've got another think coming -- there are many, many people who think that there are some things that should not be available to anyone. Kiddie porn would be one obvious example.

      • You're right, there have been a few successful efforts to regulate privately-viewed content on the Internet. Most of the big, Federal-level stuff hasn't gone over too well, either as legislation or in the courts when challenged. COPA is the big example I'm thinking of. The Internet just isn't as easy for bluenoses to come down on as TV and other media.

        There is that Utah law that requires ISPs to give customers tools that can be used to self-censor, either in the form of parental-control software or rout
        • . The law places those materials (I think rightly so!) outside the realm of free speech and privacy protections beccause we assume that children were exploited/harmed in making them

          Thing is that some moral conservatives would want to put lolicon [wikipedia.org] anime in the same category as live-action child pornography.

      • A much bigger problem would be people (like politicians e.g.) who don't want people to be able to NOT watch something (like their election ads or propaganda e.g.).
    • That's the problem, though--broadcast TV is defined as a "public" medium, partly because everybody can and does receive it in the clear, and partly because (in the US and Canada, at least) spectrum rights are public property, and as such must serve the public interests, meaning that the content on those waves shouldn't be terribly offensive to many people.

      But I really, REALLY dislike the idea of government-appointed (or even elected) censors dictating what can go on the air, or imposing after-the-fact fin

      • Not to be a dick, but did you notice the difference between my proposal and yours? I'll spell it our for you:

        LET'S MINIMIZE THE NEED FOR CENSORSHIP.

        Isn't that a good thing? The quality of shows is entirely subjective--the LAST thing I want is somebody appointed by George Fucking Bush determining what kind of TV is "good" or "bad" in quality. Just imagine a world where the only thing on is "Seventh Heaven".

        And you're sadly mistaken if you don't think that older TV existed solely for advertising. In fa
        • And you're sadly mistaken if you don't think that older TV existed solely for advertising. In fact, it was more advertising-driven than current TV, because the old rules forbid broadcasters from having a financial interest in the content-creation companies. This meant that the sole determinant in what money a broadcaster made was ratings (->advertising revenue), as opposed to making additional money from syndication or DVD sales or what-have-you. That's the only reason why shows like "Arrested Developmen
          • you assert that shows can stay on TV because networks don't care about advertising because they can make money with DVD sales. I would see the relationship working the opposite way. For example, there are millions of Star Trek fans, of all the series, who would probably buy every boxed DVD set of enterprise, no matter how good or bad it is. Some even claim the series is much better than when it started. If DVD sales drove a show to continue broadcasting, wouldn't Enterprise have a few more seasons?

            First o
            • First, in the Enterpise case, the broadcaster and the show producer are two different companies

              Good point! I conceed.

              So why don't you do like the rest of us who feel that way, and buy a TiVo?

              I don't want to pay a monthy fee for what my VCR did just fine.

              Ummm... I think pro football is a little too violent for kids, but that's why I enjoy watching it.

              Now you are humoring me. It is not violent. It is a team sport. If bringing someone down is violent, then society has become filled with pussies. Sor


              • You say...

                "What we need is more team effort. More sports. The sex, the booze, this is stuff that currupts people, it is worse than money."

                But why in the world would anyone believe that when you also say...

                "It is not violent. It is a team sport. If bringing someone down is violent, then society has become filled with pussies. Sorry, but if you cry after being tackeled, that is whack. It is no more violent than in baseball when a pitcher hits a batter."

                Talk about 'whack'! That is the kind of attitu
    • The issue I see with going to internet-based distribution for TV is how to make a profit off of it? When you watch TV, you have to have the right equipment and a little forethought to skip the commercials. If the video is playing in your media player, however, it's trivial to skip anything you want. I think content providers will be much more open to streaming video over the internet when they can be sure of making a profit off of it.
    • I hope for the best, but I worry the powers-that-be aren't going to let the internet continue to exist as we know it when real time, broadcast-quality video becomes a reality. The moral outcry groups will certainly demand filters and censorship. The government will cave in to them and set laws (they always do, no politician wants to be seen as promoting indecency.) The entertainment conglomerates will buy up or shut down most of the content providers. And the RIAA and MPAA will weigh in-- copyright viol
    • I hate to be the bearer of bad,yet logical news,but I doubt this is going to become completly free of censorship. Theres no way to avoid the stupidity of the masses.SOMEONE will inevitably complain,for some inane reason, then someone else will use that as a reason to censor it. And im sure PLEANTY of people are going to say that im wrong,that it cant happen, or that it just wont,but ya'll (insert redneck joke here) watch,it'll happen.
  • by xiaomonkey ( 872442 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:38PM (#12324946)
    While being able to search for video and images is great and all, I wonder if much more significant effort should be put into improving plain old text (technically, html/pdf/ps/doc/etc) document retrival?

    It seems that on the major search engines (google/yahoo/msn), there hasn't been any radical improvement in this area since google first came onto the scene.

    And, right now, it's not like these search engines are sufficiently close to perfection yet that there's little room for improvement. For a good number of types of queries, the signal to noisy ratio can be bit too low.
    • We *definitely* need better text search. I've tried the indexing service, all the desktop search apps, and a few more specialized solutions, and so far none of them were useable for more than a plain text search.

      For anyone who codes or does web stuff (lots of ebooks and code), we need to be able to search punctuation and symbols (I'd even ask for a Regular Expression search if possible, or at least wildcards).

      Right now if you try to search for something as simple as "a {" (w/o dbl quotes) you'd get lots o
  • by Saeger ( 456549 ) <farrelljNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Saturday April 23, 2005 @04:54PM (#12325018) Homepage
    Uploading and searching for short video clips certainly qualifies as fair use[1], but for most of the other video that people are searching for, I don't see how a "legitimate" company like Google can get away with indexing it when many others have been shutdown for doing the same thing. Sites like LokiTorrent (dead), ShareReactor (dead), ShareConnector (dead), and even Napster (dead), simply made it easy to search pointers to data, but they were forced offline anyway.

    Google would have a hell of time being a copyright cop; better to leave this function to the constantly shifting "grey" p2p world.

    [1] unless the recent idea of a "permission culture" has overtaken your worldview.

    • Even now, you can use google as a search engine for torrents with the -filetype: .torrent switch.

      I can't think of any difference between that and Lokitorrent. Both, as you said, simply make it easier to search for pointers to data. Both Lokitorrent and Google can make the argument that they can't control what they index.

      But Google gets away with it, and will get away with the video search, because they're a big company, and big companies tend to get free passes on this sort of thing. It's easy for the
      • Even now, you can use google as a search engine for torrents with the -filetype: .torrent switch.

        That doesn't seem to work for me. Google needs to be able to read the fileformat that you instruct it to look inside, so with something like .rtf filters have been created specifically for it. But you are correct, it is possible to use google to find torrents by just serching for followed by "torrent".

    • What is this is the plan? No copyright cop.

      Someone is going to make an assload of money from internet film downloads eventually. What if google just decided that it should be them? They've got an obscene amount of cheap bandwidth and storage

      Give everyone a couple of gig upload space, load the download pages with ad words and knuckle down for the court battle. They've got a lot of money at the moment- if they throw it all into a copyright law war chest things could get interesting.

    • Is there any way to limit the search so only videos greater than some time or size will be returned? There are too many 10 second clips of crappy quality.
  • by t0qer ( 230538 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @05:08PM (#12325080) Homepage Journal
    Nullsoft Streaming Video.

    They support MPG and MOV, but not NSV. I can sort of understand the logic behind this, you can watch mpeg anywhere, but the mov part I don't understand. You pretty much have to download the quicktime player to watch mov's.

    If they're going to support one major companies streaming format, why not real, wmv and nsv?

    I just think supporting any video format, that for the masses (folks that don't know better) requires a download of a player that constantly tries to take over ever file association on your system is wrong. I always tell quicktime "No, please don't try and take over my midi, I have a wavetable card, no, don't take over my other sound and movie formats, please stop bugging me to download additional components" but like a bad child it just keeps bugging me.

    NSV was purely a windows thing for a while, but now mplayer and VLC support it. You can watch vp3 encoded videos on any system with those clients on any system. Also on2 has made the vp3 codec open source, and there are versions of it for anything.

    Just my critique on one of the new video services. Yeah is sort of rantish, so what?

    --toq
    • Quicktime is bad? I've never had any problems with Quicktime at all. I have it associated with MOVs and that's about it. sure, with the free player, you get the "Pro" upgrade banner when you launch it, and no fullscreen. The fullscreen thing I think is stupid on the part of Apple if they want their player to be used by the masses.

      Compare to Real Player, Quicktime is heaven. The hordes of options to disable on install is ridiculous.

      Now I don't know why they don't do Real and WMV. Probably they will. But to
    • Maybe because mpg and mov are not streaming formats?

      btw I never even heard of NSV before I read your post but I hate wmv, asf and real for their poor quality and high error ratio
    • NSV was purely a windows thing for a while, but now mplayer and VLC support it. You can watch vp3 encoded videos on any system with those clients on any system

      -1: MisInformative

      Yes, MPlayer now supports playing NSV streams, but NOT files. NSV support chokes on downloadable NSV files, and it has no support for seeking in NSV files anyhow.

      You pretty much have to download the quicktime player to watch mov's.

      As opposed to Real, WMV, Divx, what? To watch a video made in a format, you have to download a pl

  • Geez (Score:3, Funny)

    by figjamjam ( 121274 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @05:09PM (#12325086) Homepage
    .... when was "Search Battle" ever in the cinemas ???

    Anyone got an imdb link for it? :) :) :)
  • be honest ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Janek Kozicki ( 722688 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @05:15PM (#12325106) Journal
    .. there is no search battle. PR tell that there is one, because google is not paying to PR.
  • there is no progress. Every major innovation in media has been either ignored or greenlighted solely whether or not the porn industry has decided to use it. Sex is money... and the porn industry knows sex if you follow me.
  • I've been studying the upcoming internet video revolution very intensely. Spearheading the effort for distribution of large video files are the various torrent trackers out there. However, for smaller video clips, especially the viral ones, there seem to be a few large sites that categorize and aggregate the content. iFilms does this quite nicely, and I wouldn't be shocked if Google purchased them.

    However, the more people who are trying to break into this market, the more it is going to split up collecti

    • However, the more people who are trying to break into this market, the more it is going to split up collections of video. Because when you have competitors, the name of the game will soon be "exclusive content".

      Right - just like iTunes. Apple makes it very convenient to legally access a modestly large archive of music, but if you want access to ENTIRE SUPERSET out there, then you've got to use the slightly-less-conveinent-P2P which doesn't have to bother pushing against the legal friction of securing righ

    • http://www.ourmedia.org/ [ourmedia.org] is interesting and
      http://www.participatoryculture.org/ [participatoryculture.org] seems promissing.
  • "...are creating tools to make putting video online nearly as simple as publishing text."

    Come on! It already /is/ as easy as 'publishing txt'! Get some ftp space, and you are done. Maybe even put up a simple page with a hyperlink, if you want to get fancy. The only problem is bandwidth (or more accurately, down-/upload limits).

    So, big whoop that all these sites are getting 'in on teh action', but it's not like we're talking about anything new here, unless we're talking contextual search of video, direct f
  • by writermike ( 57327 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @05:25PM (#12325154)
    Welcome to Google Vid. Please enter your search terms:

    Boobs breasts tits boobies boobies boobies boobies boobies boobies boobies boobies boobies

    [OK] [I'm Feeling Randy]
  • What's a lot more interesting is the amount of new search startups. A great deal of these are really just search aggregators, but there are some really innovative new companies coming out of the woodworks. A search engine I've been using recently is http://www.gofish.com/ [gofish.com] This is the direction that the small search engines are going, I feel. More paid search results, mixed with digital media purchasing. GoFish.com actually just launched a useful new service which allows you to search for digital media (mu
  • If the internet is "a convenient resource for finding much-talked-about events on video", then "Large net portals and a handful of smaller sites are looking to"...EXTEND/ADVANCE/IMPROVE "that." By using the word "change", the article suggests that the internet is not already a convenient resource for finding video, of which the opposite is stated in the opening part of the sentence. Ok, I feel better now...
  • by pipingguy ( 566974 ) on Saturday April 23, 2005 @07:17PM (#12325820)

    I was recently trying to explain the humour in the following dialogue exchange from Army of Darkness to a friend, but he didn't get it. Maybe pasting together the two clips would work better.

    Ash: Klaatu verrata nectu.
    Wise man: Again.
    Ash: Klaatu verrata nectu.
    Wise man: Again.
    Ash: I got it, I got it. I know your damn words, right?

    [...time passes until the critical moment, Ash tries to remember...]

    Ash: Klaatu verrata n... Necktie... Nickel... It's an "N" word, it's definitely an "N" word!
    Ash: Klaatu verrata [under his breath] nekt agh agh ahh.

    [The evil dead attack because of Ash's ignorance/arrogance/bluff]
  • ... is an open search engine for *broadcast* content. Not a guide to stuff that's been ripped and recorded, but a truly free, open and platform-neutral electronic program guide.

    Yes, I mean a replacement for these bloodsucking leeches. [gemstartvguide.com]

    Why? Because ... it's time for Gemstar's cozy little patent-protected franchise to end. There's nothing sacred about aggregating TV schedules. They're like phone directories in that as simple compilations they can't be copyrighted.
  • They are going to try to work on a standard that is going to allow a straight upload of movies and videos just as easy as text? Think about it... the piracy risk is going to be too high. I know I probably haven't looked too in depth about this topic, but from just the article that I've read, I can say that this idea is not heading in the right direction. Especially when the MPAA and RIAA have knowledge about it.

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