While googling about for intros (opening / title credits) on Anime series for another post, I stumbled on YouTube.com. Strange site. As far as I can tell: You upload movies. Then other people download them. All for free. Lots of it is funny skits or lame oops-I-fell-down-the-steps type of stuff, but they also have quite a bit of copyrighted stuff. Like, full episodes of Haibane Renmei. What the heck?
I must be missing something here. Why hasn’t this site been sued into oblivion? Moreover, how do you make money letting people use your site as a big file-sharing depot? The bandwidth for video-on-demand for millions of users is not cheap, and you can’t hope to pay for it with banner ads. They don’t even force you to create an account to see the videos. Google was able to direct-link me to their videos, bypassing various ads and possible chances at information aggregation.
I keep looking around the site to find out what they are up to. I keep expecting to see some sort of fine print that shows me what their particular angle is. I don’t see one. Very strange.
As an aside: For crying out loud, don’t watch these shows like this! Even if you don’t care about copyrights or the original artists, you’d be cheating yourself if you watched these shows in this small window with low quality sound. This isn’t crappy cut & paste American animation, and some of the series have stunning visuals. You really will be missing a lot on the small screen. In particular, you’d have to really hate yourself to watch Haibane Renmei like this.
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