Why wouldn’t you YouTube?

YouTube, YouTube, YouTube. If you want to upload a video on the Internet, pretty much anyone will default to the web’s standard. And why shouldn’t they? YouTube has been the platform for viral sensations, from huge brands (Old Spice) to kid musicians (Justin Bieber).

The wisdom: “Go where the people are.” It makes YouTube tempting, especially as it continues to expand its features and reach. But there are some things that YouTube can’t do, or doesn’t do so well. There are plenty of other high-quality video platforms with competitive features or specialized markets.

Last night on Twitter I was talking to Craig and Greg Lexiphanic about YouTube, particularly in the context of Government 2.0. Mashable offer seven alternatives to YouTube – from Blip.tv to yfrog. One of the benefits of some of the suggestions is that there is less spam and trolling, which is one of the problems of YouTube. (Craig actually suggests government departments switch off comments on YouTube, because of the moderation overhead.)

This doesn’t mean YouTube isn’t the right place for some content. Such as Zombies

Personally, I think the choice of YouTube should be based on the kind of engagement you expect. Content that is of interest to niche audiences, controversial or wasn’t designed to be sharable or engaging (i.e. reposted public education TV adverts) may mean that YouTube isn’t the right place or it shouldn’t be the only place.

I thought this comment on the Mashable post was interesting:

It’s important to place your videos in multiple places, especially if you want to reach a broader audience. You never really know where people are going to discover your content. I’ve put short videos on YouTube that got very few views, but got significantly more on Flickr.

Interesting that the article didn’t mention Facebook as a place for videos. I get tons of activity when I post a video to Facebook.

BTW To Mashable’s list I’d also suggest 23video, which offers a complete video site service.