On an average day, over 72 hours of video content is uploaded to YouTube every minute. Like attempting to find a needle in a digital haystack, you spend a good chunk of your time sifting through home videos of cat tricks and out-of-tune Beyonce covers until you finally stumble upon a low-quality version of the video your friends keep raving about.
Enter Waywire, a new video-archiving site dedicated to collecting videos from different media platforms across the web and organizing them in one location. Videos are grouped by tags and categories, making it easy for users to explore through the news and content on subjects they enjoy.
“Over a year ago, Co-founders Cory, Sarah and I were talking about how there is no place that you can go to watch video that you don’t have to swim through an ocean of user-generated content,” CEO Nathan Richardson shares with NMR. “There is video across the web, but there is no one place, and that’s how Waywire was born.” Still in it’s alpha phase, and soon to be moving into beta come April, Richardson and his co-founders envision Waywire as the Pandora or Pinterest of online video.
But the big question remains: Can this platform prosper in the shadow of the already-established YouTube? YouTube has dominated most sites that have come across its path and is seen as a video authority above other sites such as Hulu, Netflix, Vine and Vimeo. With this track record it seems impossible for any new platform such as Waywire to play in the major leagues with YouTube. But as Richardson says, this company isn’t trying to compete against YouTube, but rather aggregate and organize videos onto one pre-existing site. They’ve already begun building relationships with Fullscreen, Maker Studio and Big Frame in the hopes that these studios’ YouTubers will upload their content directly to Waywire.
“I think that the one thing that has to do with our success has everything to do with timing,” says Richardson. “I think that the rate of people cutting the cable cord in these options of viewing video online or through devices has hit a major tipping point. The second thing is that everyone understands that there needs to be improvement in how you discover, how you curate, how you follow video.” Waywire spokesperson Michele Clarke added, “Perhaps a mistake that other people made was really trying to take on YouTube and compete against it, whereas what Waywire is doing is complementing and really enhancing. YouTube has an amazing database, but you do need a way to sort of get through all that incredible volume of information.”
Still in it’s infancy, it will be interesting to watch the growth of Waywire and how it will fare in the video-uploading community. Will it become an ally rather than threat to YouTube?
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