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This is a wiki article about the Revver website. To visit the website, see
Revver logo.
Revver on February 21st, 2009
Affiliation lonelygirl15
Type Video-hosting
Current Status Active

Revver is a video sharing website that hosts user-generated content. It was used for embedding lonelygirl15 videos from early September 2006 through July 2007. Revver attaches advertising to user-submitted video clips and shares ad revenue 50/50 with the creators. Videos can be displayed, downloaded and shared across the web in either Apple QuickTime or FLV format.


Revver was founded by Steven Starr, Ian Clarke, and Oliver Luckett in 2004 in Los Angeles. The website itself launched in November 2005. The company received investment from Bessemer Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Draper Richards, William R. Hearst, III, Comcast Interactive Capital and Turner Broadcasting.

The Revver 1.0 version of the site was released in September 2006. This included a new design, user dashboard, a web based uploader and Flash as a video delivery method.

Around the same time as this release, prominent YouTube user lonelygirl15 signed a promotional deal with Revver. The exact terms of the deal were never revealed, but some initial interviews of Jessica Rose and Yousef Abu-Taleb were filmed in front of a Revver backdrop.

Bree The Cookie Monster was the first Lonelygirl15 video uploaded to Revver, on September 1, 2006. The Creators then began to upload prior videos (except those with copyright issues) and embed them on instead of YouTube versions.

Revver grew slowly in popularity. Shortly prior to its relaunch [when was this?], only around 20,000 videos were available on the site. By mid-October 2006 this number had jumped to 100,000. The site's most popular user, a creator of videos mixing Mentos into Coke, had generated around $30,000.

Revver released its API in September, 2006. Developers using the API can build a website with all the features on and have complete access to the full Revver library of videos.

As Revver struggled to develop its business model, including the use of pre-roll ads as a potential revenue sources, YouTube began to get roll out its own partner program, and Lonelygirl15 was one of the first announced partners. Mission Gamma (Jul. 17, 2007) was that last Lonelygirl15 video posted on Revver. After that point, reverted to primarily using YouTube embeds of videos.

When you see the "date posted" date on LGPedia for lonelygirl15 videos posted during the Revver-era, you will note that videos were often posted on YouTube a few days after they appeared on Revver. This gap was eliminated right before the switch back to YouTube.

In February 2008, Revver was sold to LiveUniverse (owner of for approximately $5 million.

Revenue Model

Revver was one of the first video-sharing websites to monetize user-generated content through advertising. Revver's system was compared to Google's Adwords, but for video rather than websites. The key technology behind Revver is the RevTag, a tracking tag attached to videos. The RevTag automatically displays a static, clickable advertisement at the end of each video. When viewers click on it, the advertiser is charged and the advertising fee is split between the video creator and Revver. Since the RevTag is part of the video file itself, the technology works no matter where the video file is hosted or displayed, be it at, at another website, or in a user's hard drive or portable video player. Therefore Revver's monetization of the video is not hampered by the downloading or sharing of the video file by users.

The only circumstance where the RevTag can fail to load an ad, or to register an ad click, is if the device playing the video is not connected to the internet, in which case a default "Brought to you by Revver" message is shown at the end. Of course, if the video file is transcoded into a different format (such as by uploading it to YouTube or Google Video, or by running it through a program that changes the format of the video file, e.g. into MPEG or RealPlayer), then the RevTag would almost certainly be lost.

The Revver website provides tools for sharing including RSS, podcasting, and embeddable FLV or QuickTime players. This minimizes any added benefits of transcoding. Revver thus makes it easy for creators and fans to embed the video anywhere while still in its original RevTagged version.

Revver's affiliate program helps users promote their favorite videos (or any videos they believe will become popular), be it through email, sneakernet, peer-to-peer sharing, or posting on their own website or on social-networking webpages. Revver affiliates earn 20% of ad revenue for sharing videos. The remaining revenue for each video is split 50/50 between the video creator and Revver. This is possible because the RevTag in a video file that is promoted by an affiliate contains information not only about the video being played but also about the affiliate.

Creators are able to restrict what kinds of advertisements may be placed at the end of their videos. Similarly, advertisers may choose to request that their ads be shown in videos of certain categories (such as videos that are most popular on certain websites), thus allowing them to better target their desired demographics.

To enable lawful sharing of Revver vidoes, the Revver upload license allows for redistribution under the Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Creative Commons License.


One of the complaints about Revver is viewer privacy − in order to download the ad, the video file must contact the Revver servers with information about the video (at least the category, possibly the video ID). In the words of CEO Steven Starr, 'everywhere it's going, it's saying "hey, I'm being watched"' (Oct 17th, 2006 at USC). This conflicts with viewers' privacy expectations when they're playing the video from a source that's not normally tracked (such as their own hard disks).

Official Accounts


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