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Personal video hosting

I was writing the article on micromobility and wanted to share a hyperlapse of one of my trips to the grocery store on a Onewheel. I could theoretically host the video on my own server, but handling the backend for video streaming is not the business I want to be in right now. That means I need to select a video hosting provider.

What I'm not doing

The default option would be to upload the video to YouTube and embed it here.

YouTube has a lot of things going in its favor. It's "free", fast, well-known, and can help grow your audience.

Relying on YouTube for hosting is a bit of a Faustian bargain — I get sent viewers and don't pay anything, but I help keep my audience on a platform that is waging low-grade psychological warfare on over 2 billion people. Ad-sustained services aren't toxic for only the content consumers — creators also live in constant fear of doing something that upsets the algorithm that feeds them.

If I were to upload a YouTube video that encouraged people to get off the couch and take a walk, some percentage of people might exit YouTube after watching. The algorithm would detect that my video tends to reduce revenue because people who watch it tend to leave the website instead of watching more videos and ads. It might recommend fewer people to my video, reducing my income.

Even if the current incarnation of the algorithm doesn't actually explicitly do this, the incentives not aligned in a way that is kosher for me and I'm not comfortable subjecting you to it.

I don't blame content creators uploading to YouTube whatsoever. It's a classic network effect and market failure. YouTube has the users because it has the content. It has the content because it has the users. Until we engineer, educate, and legislate our way out of this ad-revenue-driven hellscape, it's going to stay that way.

I'm partially complicit. I don't upload to YouTube, but I do watch. My participation in the audience makes YouTube a more attractive platform for creators. If it's possible, I consume creator content elsewhere. I support several folks on services like Patreon), but not everyone I follow has one set up.

I'd like to write more about revenue models, incentives, and regulation in the future. As you can see, I might have an opinion or two.

Getting what you pay for

I got the bare-bones plan on Vimeo. It's $7 per month for basically unlimited service, responsive customer support, and no dystopian mind control attempts. For me, this is obviously worth it. If you're reading this, know that your sanity is worth at least $7 per month to me.

Testing, 1, 2, 3...

Here's a random test video to see if I got the embed styling right.