Google is planning to expand the world of "my media" by asking consumers to submit personal videos to the search-based Web giant. "We don't know what we're going to get," said Larry Page, Google's co-founder and president of products. "It's video blogging, people will produce it themselves. Then we can get that indexed."
Page was speaking as part of a panel, "Attack of the Empowered Consumer: Understanding New Media Markets," at the National Cable & Telecommunications Association's annual event, The National Show, in San Francisco. He said more details about Google's plan would be forthcoming in the next few days, and that the product name at this stage was simply being known as video submissions.
The effort is no doubt an attempt to expand Google's ability to offer new kinds of search-based products to an online market being remade by the rapid shift of consumers to at-home broadband connections. Advertisers too are increasingly interested in broadband video products. Comcast currently asks singles to submit videos of themselves for its video-on-demand service, dating on demand.
In January, Google had said it would roll out a video service that would allow users to search the text of TV shows and video clips, but not actually run those clips. Google ran up against copyright issues with that idea, but it now appears to be circumventing that problem by creating something of a video bloggers universe.
"The Internet enables anyone to become a publisher. Our mission is to organize the world's information," said the 32-year-old Google co-founder, adding that video has generally been a lot harder to distribute and is more costly and slower from a user's standpoint than simple text.
Speaking as part of a question-and-answer session with the press after the panel, Page confirmed Google is working with former Vice-President Al Gore's new TV channel, Current (formerly INdTV), to provide it with "zeitgeist information" that could be used to produce edgy programming targeted at young adults. Gore's channel, which is run by entrepreneur Joel Hyatt, is also planning to air videos sent in by the public.