April 4, 2005 12:52 PM PDT
Google queues up video
"We're going to start taking video submissions from people" in the next few days, Page told a crowd at the National Cable & Telecommunications Association show here. Later, in response to a reporter's question, he called the move an "experiment in video blogging."
The announcement comes as the Mountain View, Calif.-based company is ramping up ambitious video search plans. In January, it unveiled Google Video, an engine that lets people search the text of TV shows. The service scours programming from PBS, Fox News, C-SPAN, ABC and the NBA, among others, making broadcasts searchable the same day.
People can't yet watch those videos directly from Google's site. Rather, consumers can search on a term--such as "Indonesian tsunami"--to find the TV shows in which it was mentioned, a still image of the video and closed-captioned text of that particular segment of the program. Google said it expects to add video playback down the road, after ironing out the complexities of broadcasting rights and business models with various content owners.
Like Google's recent library project scanning volumes of books, the company's video ambitions highlight its broad plans to digitize the world's content and make it searchable. It also foreshadows a heated race with rivals Yahoo and Microsoft to be the de facto service for finding information wherever it resides: television, the Internet, cell phones or other convergence devices.
Yahoo has begun promoting the video search engine it introduced in December by adding a tab from its home page. Also, the company has teamed with TVEyes to begin searching closed-captioned text of Bloomberg and BBC programs.
Microsoft is also beefing up its search and video offerings. It has a search advertising service in the works, and last week launched MSN Video Downloads, billed as providing daily TV programming from MSNBC.com, Food Network, Fox Sports and iFilm, among others. The service costs $19.95 a year and will let MSN members put video clips on portable media players, according to a company press release.
CNET News.com's Stefanie Olsen contributed to this report.