YouTube Is the McDonald’s of Video: 1B (a Day) Served

In a rather self-congratulatory blog post commemorating the third anniversary of Google (s GOOG) purchasing his company, YouTube CEO and co-founder Chad Hurley said that his site has been serving “well over” a billion video views a day. (Technically, he just says “a billion views,” but we think it’s safe to assume he’s talking videos and not pages).

This is both an internal and a global number, which would help to explain why it’s so much higher than comScore’s figure of 10 billion videos served for the entire month of August from YouTube. Hurley didn’t indicate as to how long YouTube’s been serving that many vids, but TechCrunch had reported the daily count as 1.2 billion back in June.

Hurley also shared some YouTube values that have remained the same over the years:

Looking back at those early days, we were committed to some basic principles that have since become fundamental tenants in the world of online video:

  • Speed matters: Videos should load and play back quickly.
  • Clip culture is here to stay: Short clips are voraciously consumed and perfect for watching a wide variety of content.
  • Open platforms open up possibility: Content creation isn’t our business; it’s yours. We wanted to create a place where anyone with a video camera, a computer, and an Internet connection could share their life, art, and voice with the world, and in many cases make a living from doing so.
  • Notice that those three principles have nothing to do with premium content, and indeed that’s where YouTube’s biggest problems have arisen: the Viacom lawsuit, the music label fights, the slow trickle of big content deals.

    YouTube has never been particularly forthcoming about its numbers, and while this milestone is laudatory, it’s also vague. We’ve found that more concrete details about the site — especially on the monetization side — come out during Google’s earnings calls. The next one is scheduled for Oct. 15th.

    Liz Gannes contributed to this story.