YouTube's been quite a bit in the news lately for hitting a few milestones. A week or so ago it reached 100 million video downloads a day (Hitwise) and most recently it's been declared the fastest growing site on the Web (Nielsen//NetRatings) with 297% growth since January. I think this is some significant movement this space, ironically right after when MySpace was named the top site on the web.
YouTube and MySpace, along with the same audience (teens, young adults) have a few things in common. They are simple, fast and to-the-point, which obviously appeals to this audience. One more noticeable thing is that they've both been affected with some kind of an accidental growth spurt which is the real culprit of their current mainstream success, for example the SNL Lazy Sunday skit and YouTube.
I think they're the first two real Web 2.0 mainstream success-hitters, and I do feel this is just the start and there will be more to come. I think the 'tipping point' (as it's known) or the point when something hits mainstream is always largely accidental, unexpected, and rather ironic. There are literally thousands of startups in this space, and who's to say YouTube and MySpace will be the only ones known to have 'made it'? The fact that this has made news, on the other-hand, tells that Web 2.0 isn't unreachable to the masses; it can be done, it has been done.