YouTube giveth and YouTube taketh away, apparently. Whether that’s good business, well, I guess we’ll find out.
Matthew Lush has been a major YouTuber for a long time. With almost one million subscribers, his channel can definitively be described as established. So what YouTube has allegedly done, is going to potentially have a real-world impact on his finances and their credibility.
Apparently Lush Cosmetics wanted in on the YouTube game. Better late than never, I guess. The company allegedly decided it needed the “Lush” URL on YouTube. And it certainly seems like the video platform capitulated.
Matthew took to his Twitter account to declare that he’s been “robbed.” YouTube has given away a domain he’s sat on for “ten years” in order to placate a big company. That is, a big company that currently only has 10,000 followers.
Could YouTube truly have given away a domain name by an established YouTube star in order to mollify a cosmetics company? Would YouTube actually do that to one of their own?
Of course we reached out to YouTube and Matthew to check with them both before indulging in rampant speculation. We’re not some fly-by-night media hootenanny after all. This isn’t our first rodeo. We’ll let you know when we hear back.
Matthew’s claim appears to have validity though — typing in www.youtube.com/lush takes you not to his landing page, but that of the cosmetics company. You’d have to type in www.youtube.com/user/lust to find Matthew organically via the searchbar.
That just doesn’t seem fair.
His fans are, of course incensed. One of them went so far as to apparently burn their collection of Lush Cosmetics products in a plastic trashcan … that’s probably not safe. The saner fans though have started a hashtag #GiveLushBack and a Change.Org petition to demand YouTube play fair.
But whether or not YouTube cares is another matter altogether.
Of course, they should care. While unusual, this allegation could be a crippling blow to their reputation at a time when they aren’t the only game in town. With Vessel, Facebook and other new media video platforms making moves, if YouTube starts snatching URLs, it could cost them some of their biggest assets. Ask Myspace how quickly the tide of public opinion can change once corporations get involved.