Google adopts smarter approach to shutting down Google Video
Now, they've admitted that they goofed with the shut-down strategy, and are offering all customers a refund for videos they purchased, and will ensure that those videos play for an extra six months before shutting the service down entirely. That makes a lot more sense.
What's the underlying lesson here? People are buying digital video in all sorts of formats -- at Google, it was in their own home-grown format, at Apple, it's video wrapped in Fairplay DRM, at Real it's in their RealVideo format, etc. etc.
More and more, I think that what will make online video take off is a single, very portable format with different degrees of DRM that can be turned on or off. Would everyone in the US have bought VCRs or DVD players if the format differences with videotapes or discs hadn't been resolved?