Yahoo vs YouTube

So I have heard that Yahoo is going to offer a competitor to YouTube.  I am kind of excited about this idea.

Don’t get me wrong.  I love YouTube.  Anyone who has read this blog knows that I watch a lot of JVloggers, and spend more time than I should watching old TV shows and clips online.  I even have some videos on YouTube.  I think I have about ten.  They haven’t gone viral (and I wouldn’t receive any money even if they did) and only one of then has had a really strong number of views–though I am not sure what the attraction is, and nobody has commented on it.

I guess I just want to be there, on the ground floor when it happens.  While it won’t be a new thing (like YouTube was), I would like to say I was there from the beginning.  I want to be one of the originals, even though the idea won’t be that original.

There are problems, however.  What kind of content should I put up?  I am not in Japan, so JVlogging is out.  I live in Canada, and while I love my country, I cannot see any blogging potential there.  I love my hobbies, but since I switch them around so much and am rather lax on completion, I am not sure there is anything there either.  I love to rant (check out my other blog site to see what I mean) but I have a face for radio–and who would want to see a static image of a wall or picture while I rant away?

I am excited and I want to participate, but I don’t know how.

On another note, I still don’t know what they are going to call this thing.  YouTube is a brilliant name.  Yahoo tube sounds derivative.  YahooTV doesn’t sound cool.  They already have Yahoo Screen–so I guess that’s not it.  I suppose, if I were to name it, I would call it OnYahoo.


Goodbye Polly Scale
I made up a word….I’m an English teacher, I do that all the time.  Besides, it really fits the topic of this blog.  As a hobbyist, you have lots to cope with.  Of course those things include time, money, frustrations, small parts, and delays in delivery.  The one that seems to bother me the most are discontinuations.

Discontinuations refer to products you want to buy no longer being sold, and there being almost no way to get them.  It’s like going to a Japanese convenience store.  You continually buy a product, only to discover one day that it is gone, and it’s not coming back.  You thought by buying them that you’d send a message to the manufacturer that they should keep making it, but you were wrong.

This happens to TV shows that you love.  You think it’s great, but you might be the only one.  I loved Firefly, and though I know I am not the only one, they killed it.  I loved an 80’s TV show called Shell Game, but it didn’t live past five episodes.

For the hobbyist, what usually happens follows two patterns.  In pattern one, the hobbyist waits to buy something.  Maybe they don’t have the money (usually my case) or they are hoping to score a better deal somewhere down the line, or they just put some other item ahead of it in the queue.  Regardless, when they finally decide to make the purchase, it’s gone.  Lone gone.  They scour the internet and every hobby shop they can find, but to no avail.

The other pattern is that the hobbyist uses something religiously.  They come to depend on it, perhaps even take its availability for granted.  Then one day, it is gone.  The manufacturer has discontinued it.  There were probably warning signs.  There might have been announcement in the various magazines that cater to the hobby.  Perhaps someone had remarked on it in an internet bulletin board.  Had they taken the news to heart they would probably have known about it and stocked up.

Recently, the paint that I have been using for my model train buildings has been discontinued.  What does that mean?  It means that I will have to use something else.  I really shouldn’t worry because there are lots of paint manufacturers out there.  Any day now, that same company will probably announce a replacement.  Even if it doesn’t, the hobby store will have to find a new supplier, because paint is an integral part of the hobby store.

The uncertainty is frustrating.  When will it happen?  When will it be resolved.  I am not a great enough painter that I have such a detailed understanding of paint or the different characteristics of paint.  I buy what they tell me is good at the hobby shop or they talk about in the magazines.  It’s just a minor annoyance.  However, there are hobbyists who have mastered the characteristics of a particular paint brand and are probably going to be frustrated.  They are going to flood the hobby chat rooms and bulletin boards, announcing Armageddon.    I will quietly sympathize, and hope that my paint supply doesn’t run out soon.

A Win Win Situation

Getting some trains running has buoyed my spirits.  I got the chance to hear the clack clack of the engines running over the tracks, see the lights on the diesel blaze ahead of the train, and got to see some of my trains perform.  We will call that a win.

I also got the inspiration to shoot some pictures and some video.  The pictures I will include here, and the video….well, despite my belief that I would never do it, I uploaded the videos to YouTube.  A few people have stumbled across them, but I don’t expect that number to grow rapidly.

I think the motivation for putting things on YouTube was in fact a combination of several things.  The first is that I took some video, and wondered if it could be uploaded.  The second was that, despite my reservation, I want to emulate those Jvloggers (like Busan Kevin, Tokyo Cooney, discount sausage, and the late Rodger Swan) that I like so much and be on YouTube.  The third is that I was hoping to draw a few more people to my blog.

The last of these things seems a little selfish, but it is true.  Right now, about twenty people see each post (and sometimes fewer).  Though I don’t think it will ever reach thousands, I can dream.  I’d like to think I am entertaining people, and that I could find a larger audience.  Of course, I need to be realistic as well.

Regardless of the motivation, the end result is that I have some train pictures to include here, and four videos up on YouTube.  Again, we would call that a win-win situation.


Hobbies I would take up: The Bottom Five (part 5–vlogging)

I am a big fan of YouTube.  I have subscribed to more than 15 people, and I check it daily.  Mostly, I watch jvloggers (as we call the people who make video blogs from Japan).  Having lived in Japan, most of what they show me isn’t really new.  I’ve eaten most of the foods they talk about, purchased beer and other drinks at vending machines they talk about, been to apartments much like the ones they show, and shopped at quite a few of the stores they tour around.  However, Japanis a country full of surprises, so sometimes they surprise me.  Sometimes, they really surprise me.  That is what makes wading through some of it worthwhile.

I started blogging because some of these jvloggers have blogs that are companions to their jvlogs, or are done in the same tone as their vlogs.  It got me interested, and now I have my own blog (2 in fact, and maybe someday soon 3).  Without having stumbled across these jvloggers, I wouldn’t be writing this today.

I guess why I haven’t vlogged comes down to several reasons.  I don’t have a digital video camera (or iPhone).  I could buy one, of course, but it just doesn’t seem like a priority, mainly because of the other two reasons.  I would like to put my voice on these vlogs, but probably not my face.   I don’t know if I would be self-conscious, or nervous or what, but the prospect of appearing on camera (and not acting–because if you gave me the lines, I think I could do it) and adlibbing seems hard.  Lastly, Japan is interesting, exotic, and full of surprises.  South-western Ontarioseems less so.  If you’ve never been here, there might be something that really wakes you up (when my students see snow falling for the first time they get pretty excited, and when they see the fast hard pace of hockey they get excited), but I am not sure I could really get behind that.  My students could make Canada vlogs and that would be cool.  Me….. not sure.

Maybe someday I will find the impetus for this, but I don’t think it will be anytime soon.

If you want to see some of the jvloggers I mentioned, please go to YouTube and check out the following:
(Most of them have entertained me greatly, and even infomred me.  I appreciate their work and have no reservation recommending them whatsoever)










Through these jvloggers, you can find many others (if this is your thing).