Flickr’s Not Dead Yet

Flickr needs video. No really. Yahoo! has been struggling under the weight of Flickr since they bought it trying to find different ways to monetize but the answer lies in video. Let’s start with a scenario and maybe you’ll get where I’m going with this.

Thanksgiving. This year. It’s not yet time to dive into the golden brown bird so everyone is gathered around the new babies talking. Jim and Sue have the video camera rolling right as their daughter takes her first steps. Awesome! Jim says he wants to edit the video before putting it online for everyone to see. No problem since Jim lives in Wisconsin and he’s only at you house visiting.

Jim goes home after the holiday, edits his video and gets ready to put it online. Where should Jim upload it to? Youtube? Google video? Kind of impersonal. Jim doesn’t really want to share video of his daughter taking her first steps right alongside videos of drunken teen girls kissing and dancing to “Barbie Girl”.

What about one of the other video hosting sites? Who? I’ve never heard of them and odds are Gramma never has either. So Jim shuts down his computer and the video never leaves the desktop.

This is where Flickr comes in.

Flickr has already established brand superiority in online photo uploading. Millions of people upload every day! The user base is already there. There just needs to be a way for them to upload video now. WHICH brings me to the next point.

Flickr has developed an easy to use system for uploading and has left the API open so developers can build upon the system.

And the final point, monetization. Transcribing the video from whatever format it’s uploaded in to Flash based video or H.264 for download gives Yahoo! the opportunity to throw in “content sensitive” ads at the beginning or end of the video. This means money, money, money.

How cool would it be to go to your Flickr contacts list and see not only the photos but the videos your friends have upload? Huh? Huh? Is that cool or what?

Yahoo! this is your chance to make a comeback. Don’t mess this up.