YouTube: Now Serving 2 Billion Clips a Day

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Almost five years to the day the first version of YouTube’s site went live online, the video-sharing service says its crossed the threshold of having more than two billion clips played on the site each day.

It’s remarkable growth, fueled entirely by the site’s community. According to the BBC, 24 hours worth of video are uploaded to the site every single minute. And though the site is best-known for hosting ridiculous viral videos, YouTube’s gained a measure of news cred in the last year. The site hosted the video of Iranian Neda Agha Soltan being shot and killed during a June protest, a clip that turned Neda into a martyr and the worldwide face for Iran’s would-be revolutionaries. President Obama’s White House also uses the site to (somewhat controversially) report on itself.

If anything, the number is a win for Google, who looks prescient for purchasing YouTube for a cool $1.65 billion back in 2006. Though the technical challenges of serving 2 billion videos a day are massive (requiring farms of computers and expensive bandwidth), Google expects YouTube to start turning a profit this year.

The video above is the first ever posted to YouTube’s site, one of founder Jawed Karim at the zoo. Mundane? Yup. But no less revolutionary for it. Check out YouTube’s 50 greatest hits on