As the saying goes, a social network isn't a social network without its people—and when it comes to YouTube, those people tend to be both uninhibited and borderline psychotic, their creative juices running on overdrive to get the most subscribers and views. This year marks a decade since the race began.
YouTube was born in 2005 after co-founder Jawed Karim couldn't find clips of the Janet Jackson Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction without digging through endless search pages. Then came the idea that the Web needed an easier place to share and find videos. Karim and his two other co-founders (all former PayPal employees) first thought of making a video dating site called Tune In Hook Up, scrapped that idea, and bought the domain, YouTube.com, on Feb. 14, 2005, 10 years ago today. The first video, the 19-second "Me at the zoo," was uploaded by Karim the following April. They secured a $11.5 million investment in November, then sold to Google for $1.65 billion a year later.
The site has morphed from showcasing only the funny, weird, and disturbing videos that comprised its first years, to a full-on factory that pumps out personalities, video series, and channels fueled by its users. It's the go-to spot for news, opinion, live events, and replays (while still being a magnet for the absurd.)
Here are the 10 videos from YouTube's early years that helped draw in its users and launch the juggernaut that it became today.