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Why It Would Cost $37 Billion Per Year To Pre-Screen YouTube's Videos

  • TechDirt, Thursday, May 31, 2012 11:48 AM

Following Google’s big copyright victory in France on Wednesday, TechDirt asks the question: how much would it cost to pre-screen YouTube videos?

Answer: about $37 billion.

The calculation is easy, the site claims, but the one key variable is: who would do the screening?

“You can't just use random people off the street, or starving artists, or bored software engineers, because the crucial question they must answer is: does too much of this video infringe on somebody's copyright? Only one class of person is qualified to answer that, and hence to take on this job: judges.”

Given that the average pay for a judge in Silicon Valley is $177,454, and that based on the volume of uploads (currently 72 hours per minute) and the number of working hours in a working day, it would take 199,584 judges to screen YouTube’s content at a grand total of $36,829,468,840 -- which is roughly equivalent to Google’s revenue for all of 2011.  

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