YouTube Begins to Kill Off Video Download Tools

When we wrote about YouTube's paid download initiative, currently being tested, it should have been obvious that there are plenty of ways to download YouTube videos for free, so why would anyone pay for this? Thing is, when we wanted to download a video earlier, the downloader I tried (TechCrunch's, which has been around for years, and which pops up at or near the top when doing a Google search) didn't work. Uh, oh.

We wanted to download the video from YouTube because the YouTube video kept sitting there, with a apinner, rather than playing. It was probably due to the traffic, but it annoyed us. So, the desire to download it.

While other sites seemed to work (yes, we used another one), TechCrunch's failed. TechCrunch seemed to think it had been singled out,
It’s possible that YouTube was just disabling a certain technique of creating links to their video files that we happened to use, but it’s more likely that they singled us out (our tool has become very popular, and ranks second when you run a Google search for “download YouTube“).

When asked why our tool was being disabled, A YouTube spokesman referred us to this portion of the site’s Terms of Service (the company had a similar response when they
sent us a Cease and Desist back in 2006):

Section 5. Your Use of Content on the Site

Part B. You may access User Submissions for your information and personal use solely as intended through the provided functionality of the YouTube Website. You shall not copy or download any User Submission unless you see a “download” or similar link displayed by YouTube on the YouTube Website for that User Submission.
It's not surprising that YouTube would begin cracking down. In fact, I wasn't aware of that ToS clause listed above. So will downloading YouTube videos now become as frowned upon (to put it mildly) as BitTorrent? Hard to believe that YouTube could close all the holes to downloading (there are so many ways, and many of them free, and still working, when we tried recently).

It's not even clear that people are going to want to pay for user-generated videos from YouTube. While Google continues to try to monetize YouTube, it's also true that Hulu, with far less traffic than YouTube, is reportedly catching up to YouTube in terms of revenue --- and fast, due to the fact its content is movies, TV shows, and the like.
Via:  TechCrunch
Tags:  Google, YouTube
Super Dave 5 years ago

Back in the day there was Napster...

bob_on_the_cob 5 years ago

Guess we should have seen this coming.

tanka12345 5 years ago

I guess people will still always find a way to download videos for free. As Youtube develops, the video download tools will develop with Youtube.

teebird 5 years ago

I think there's a long-term, big-picture issue that this article has missed. YouTube has been under legal fire from big media, especially Viacom, because of all the illegally hosted clips from TV and movies that have been posted by YouTube users. Tightening the screws on downloading from YouTube, which is nothing more than an enforcement of their existing ToS, plus adding a service tier where users pay for downloads, looks like part of a strategy to appease Viacom and others, maybe even partially account for and pay for the commercial material that gets uploaded, as well as generate some revenue for YouTube itself.

DJMac317 5 years ago

This may seem contradictory, I have a video convesion and YouTube download program for OS X called VideoVangelist. If you're looking for one that works better than most check it out.

Jeremy 5 years ago

Um, doesn't your browser download the file every time it's played? Whether it's downloaded to your browser cache or directly to your hard drive, it's still coming to your computer the same way via the internet. Seems we're all violating their ToS whenever we watch a clip from YouTube.

linderduan 5 years ago

i dun download YouTube video any more if we have to pay for it.

Yes, there are so many ways, and many of them free, to download youtube video directly.

Free YouTube Downloader is my choice. I use this tool nearly two years. Works well. And it is total free.

YouTube will kill these tool ? My YouTube downloader is still ok.

Membrane 5 years ago

I don't know - still works for me!

MaryBerry 5 years ago

My YouTube downloader Quivic still works for me too...

I hope Google won't prevent us downloading videos using our existing YouTube downloaders, while in the mean-time only allowing a handful of videos to be downloaded through this new paid service. What is their problem? There is nothing illegal in downloading non-copyrighted content!

digitaldd 5 years ago

Didn't Google already try this method of making money with the higher quality Google Video content a few years back before they bought YouTube? Don't see why it should work now if it didn't back then..

KDeVolder 4 years ago

At least there are still free desktop applications such as VDownloader which continue to work., and the likes don't work anymore but already had more features anyway so it's the best option at the moment.

Inspector 4 years ago


JesseCUNNINGHAM one year ago

I know other good program -

Download video from Youtube - quick and easy!

Save to HD, MP4, M4A, MPEG or FLV formats

Extract audio tracks from Youtube movies

Save audio to MP3, WAV or AAC format

Easy setup

Hi-Speed download

It is FREE Software!

caxrate one year ago

Not really!

Check this out, I successfully downloaded Youtube video using this method (no software, no toolbar)

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