When something like YouTube becomes so ubiquitous, one often wonders what the hell we were doing before it was around.
As YouTube celebrates its 10th anniversary, we look back on how bad life was before it existed. The struggle was most certainly real.
1. You had to download SO many annoying plugins
Before YouTube all sites had to host the video files themselves, and there was no standard format. Remember all those annoying downloads and pop-ups for stuff like QuickTime, Windows Media Player, and worst of all Real Media Player.
It doesn’t sound that bad at first, but these things hardly ever worked. We still have nightmares.
2. You waited hours for short videos to download
If you wanted to watch trailers, music videos or other short clips, you’d have to download them directly. This would take a few minutes at least, so you’d usually go and get a snack or something whilst that was going on. Now we have access to trailers old and new, when before it was just easier to go to the cinema.
3. And sharing a video with a friend was equally difficult
Now, with the touch of a button, we can easily share cat videos with all of our friends on our social networks.
Before YouTube, sending videos was even more annoying because the file sizes were considered huge back then – even for 30 second clips in 240p.
4. If you wanted to listen to a specific song you had to own it on CD
It’s so easy to listen to practically any song nowadays. Before, if you wanted to hear a specific song you’d have to just own it, or hope that you could request it on the radio. Now we have YouTube where music gets leaked early, and old, rare demos get posted. How times have changed.
5. You had to watch music channels and wait for your favourite video
Want to watch a music video? The internet wasn’t really the way to go about it back then. Although you could find downloads, you’d often be charged or they’d take that long on your old-fashioned connection they’d be more trouble than they are worth. You were better off switching over to Smash Hits, or The Box and waiting it out. If you’re song wasn’t that popular, you could be there quite a while.
6. Any viral videos were spread by word of mouth, and were almost always on eBaumsworld
Remember that video of the Numa Numa guy? Or the Llama Song? Or the Peanut Butter Jelly guy?
Most of these early viral videos were made before YouTube existed and ended up on the likes of eBaumsWorld or AlbinoBlackSheep, websites that hosted short videos, flash games, and soundboards. We were so easily amused back then, weren’t we?
7. Your choice of entertainment was a lot more limited
Before YouTube, the internet as a source of entertainment was much more limited. Now, YouTube let’s all kinds of talented people over the world host shows and put together TV quality productions whether it be comedy, music, or educational stuff.
Back then you just had whatever was on the TV at that time (there was no catch up I’m afraid), the cinema, or whatever sick PS2 game you had at that point. Or you could just go outside.