Sustainable future of Peertube

I really like the idea of decentralized software. However, I am a little pessimistic about the peertube project. Unlike mastodon, which requires relatively small disk space, a good video sharing platform needs PBs (perhaps even Exabytes) of storage space, which is quite expensive. Personal commitments to the decentralized community are not likely to provide such a huge service.

I guess suitable commercialization is a good idea to ensure sustainability. Even Mozilla is partnering with big companies such as Microsoft, which provides revenue to support Firefox development. For example, a traditional advertisement service, or a hosting service (just like in mastodon) are some straightforward ideas. Of course, a careful balance should be designed between decentralization and commercialization.

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That’s the dilemma, isn’t it? I’m a complete newbie to this, only a day into it, and I have both hopes and reservations about it.

Hopes, because I would like to see a viable open-source and free alternative to YouTube (which is very much not free, even though it doesn’t cost anything), but I have reservations about the viability of the platform, although I think it’s genius as well.

I signed up for an account before I really understood the mechanism. I started uploading my old YouTube videos, and later was surprised to not be able to find some of the more popular videos available from the instance I have my account on. Come to learn, not all of the instances are connected (I wonder if you have to make a local copy of the data on the other instances – this would hinder your ability to connect to a ton of them). So, I find myself on an instance with a generous storage quota and no laborious requirements*, but I’m disappointed that the various instances aren’t all that well interconnected.

*There are some peertube instances with very strict and anti-free-speech terms of service, which flies in the face of the concept of free/libre/open source software and infrastructure. I’m not a free speech nut, nor am I interested in disseminating material that is vulgar, defamatory, or disturbing, at all. But I take exception with peertube instances which say that you cannot criticize a very controversial political ideology on their instance. —— In terms of blogs and forums, this kind of makes sense, but not on an open idea interchange platform, which I sincerely wish peertube to become.


EDIT: I forgot to add that while I do see commercialization as an avenue of growth, I’d love to see this avenue used less. While I love almost all of the open source (read: not fully committed to free/libre ideals) projects, I think there’s a great deal too much compromise. Take for example the Linux kernel. I’ve been off and on linux since kernel 2.0, and I’ve seen it go from a half-baked alternative OS to an incredibly powerful and viable server and desktop O.S.
But I’m a little troubled at the state it’s in. Bad corporate players such as Microsoft and VMWare have controlling seats on the Linux foundation, and Linux is used in most phones and most cars and most everything else, and yet as a user, it couldn’t be any LESS free! My phone runs Linux (Android), but I have no root access, no ability to install an alternate os/build, no ability to turn off privacy-violating “features” of the O.S.

This is an open source project?!? I don’t mean to hate on Linux, I love it to death, and I’m amazed at how far it’s come in the 21 years since I first played with it.
But the faustian deal to get Linux on darn near every device has not turned out well for us, the peon users.

Cheers again.

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After setting my Conspiracypod tv instance up, it quickly dawned on me that I’d be unable to offer accounts without some form of monthly donation to help with server costs. At the moment it will serve my personal use just fine, maybe later on I’ll find other conspiracy related instances (which I’ve not seen any yet) which I can follow to give my instance less of an empty feel.

As much as I’m trying to avoid it, there is a huge temptation right now just to use YouTube. Either that or just scrap the whole video project altogether. Bandwidth and Storage Space isn’t cheap, and if it is there’s always a catch somewhere along the way.

Maybe someone would like to help me start up a server cooperative, we purchase a bare metal server and add/upgrade our own drives, paid for through membership fees and donations. Technical details to be discussed obviously.

A module that lets instance owners set a monthly (or one time) fee for accounts?

The PeerTube project is awesome, I just wish hosting it wasn’t so expensive!