Microsoft: Soapbox no longer competing with YouTube

In the midst of the current economic climate reports have surfaced which state that Microsoft will be scaling back it's YouTube competitor, Soapbox. Soapbox has been around since 2006, but never seemed to dent the market share of YouTube.

Microsoft Vice President Erik Jorgensen said that Microsoft will 'scale back' Soapbox due to the economic situation. Recently, Jorgensen also announced the discontinuation of Microsoft Money.

However, Soapbox will not be disappearing, it will be transformed. According to CNET:

"Microsoft hopes to transform Soapbox... from an also-ran in the user-generated content space into a forum where bloggers and citizen journalists can post videos relevant to areas in which MSN focuses, categories like entertainment, lifestyle, and finance."
With that said, it is still unclear whether or not user uploads will be freely allowed.

According to a 2007 report, YouTube dominated the video sharing market with 45% share, with Soapbox trailing behind at only 3%. It is also reasonable to assume that YouTube's market share has increased within the past two years.

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19 Comments

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I don't believe that many people didn't knew about soapbox. Aren't most people on this board aware of almost everything tech related ?. O_0

I'm really disappointed with the way Microsoft released Soapbox has a half-baked attempt in competing with the other video-sharing sites.

It does very little to distinguish itself as a true player in video-sharing. The only really interesting thing about Soapbox is just it's somewhat slick interface (the video player remains in the same place whether you are browsing for other videos, or searching up new ones, uploading a video, or looking at a user's profile so you don't miss a thing and can multitask). Other than that, Soapbox is pretty subpar.

I also dislike Soapbox's use of video ads that can be up to 30 seconds long and often before each video! I'd rather see banner or pane ads, and even the text ad overlay on some videos, rather than an annoying ad I have to WAIT for 30 seconds to see a video.

It also does not help that there just isn't a lot of content that you could already get on YouTube or that Soapbox isn't guaranteed to work on any browser other than IE or Firefox.

Also every time a video finishes playing in Soapbox, you'd have 9 seconds to press replay or click another video, or else Soapbox will play some stupid MSN content video that you didn't even want!

I was hoping Microsoft would give Soapbox a refresh by rebranding it to Windows Live and adding some nice Silverlight functionality, thumbnail previews like Bing, tying it closer to Windows Live users, etc. Nope, instead it will most likely end up in the cemetery along with Windows Live Expo, QnA and other stuff MS has tried to push out with little effort. Pretty sad.

A major difference between YouTube and MSN Soapbox is that Soapbox states in its privacy policy that use of copyrighted material is not allowed and will be deleted. YouTube has that policy, but copyrighted material is still present on the site, because YouTube leaves the responsibility of finding copyrighted material in the hands of the copyright holder"

Well, that is the reason its going down-hill.. Stupid M$ retards

LOL.

Soapbox was a joke. For starters, MSN Video never received a link placement in its channel bar that sits near top of MSN.com. That's an obvious oversight. Second, MSN Soapbox was minimized to a small link next to many other links within the navigation. Who the heck would notice it?

This is yet another lesson MS will refuse to learn: you can't compete in everything.

Add my name to the list of people who hadn't heard of Soapbox. They must have put put forth a dismal marketing effort.