Blog Post

Vevo Stumbles Out of the Gate


If Vevo is supposed to be the future of the music industry, that future has gotten off to a slow and ignominious start. Apparently Vevo’s servers are still hungover from a wild night of partying with Bono, Adam Lambert, Mariah Carey, and Lady Gaga, because it’s the day after launch and the new music video site is slow to load — that is, if you can get it to load at all.

The Universal Music Group-Sony Music joint venture has big aspirations for revolutionizing the way that viewers interact with artists and their music videos — and for better monetizing those videos with ads from premium brands running alongside them.

At last night’s launch event, Vevo CEO Rio Caraeff stressed that building a positive user experience would be key to the site’s success. “If we focus on the fan, if we focus on the experience, the rest will fall in line,” he said. But the user experience thus far has been sub-optimal, to say the least.

Vevo acknowledged as much through Twitter late last night, copping to a “launch overload,” and saying that the Vevo team was “working on it.” But that was more than eight hours ago, and I still can’t get a video to load.

In response to a request for comment, a Vevo spokesperson wrote, “The traffic is experiencing right now has exceeded even our largest expectations and is multiple orders of magnitude above what any other online video service has generated at its launch. The VEVO team is working diligently to enhance the infrastructure required to more than meet the demands of the tens of millions of users who are trying to access the site on day one.”

While the technical problems might be temporary, it’s difficult to overlook the embarrassment some people in the industry may be feeling after talking up a “revolutionary” new site, only to watch it stumble on its first day in business.

16 Responses to “Vevo Stumbles Out of the Gate”

  1. I for one am shocked, SHOCKED that Rio Caraeff/Vevo takes their user-experience very seriously.

    Every time some company screws up and they tell the public they’re “taking it seriously”, take a drink. You’ll get drunk pretty fast.

    • Ha! Wouldn’t it be great if instead they said “Well, we don’t really give a rat’s ass about you and we’re just gonna throw a bunch of money and celeb endorsements at the problem so that in a week all of you simple morons will just forget this ever happened.”

      Well, maybe thats just too long.

  2. Hello,

    My name is Rio Caraeff and I am the CEO of VEVO.

    It is true that demand at far exceeded our traffic forecasts and expectations. All day and night we have been working on scaling up our infrastructure in consultation with YouTube. The site is working fine now and I can assure you that we take our user-experience very seriously and are working on improving our service, both within and outside of YouTube.

    Thank you for your interest!


    Rio Caraeff

  3. Isn’t this why most web ventures have a beta or “soft” launch precisely to work out the kinks before you blast it out to the whole world? Better to have your customers virally expand your audience than overwhelm you on launch.

  4. it’s difficult to overlook the embarrassment some people in the industry may be feeling after talking up a “revolutionary” new site, only to watch it stumble on its first day in business.<

    Do you actually read what you write? That sentence makes no sense whatsoever. Difficult to overlook embarrassment SOME people MAY be feeling? WTF?