NEW YORK—The original YouTube stars, founders Chad Hurley and Shin Chen, are being recognized for their creation by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with the Emmy Award for Lifetime Achievement.
Hurley, 42, and Chen, 40, first met when they were employees at PayPal. They would create the video-sharing website YouTube in February 2005, which would go on to be ranked as the 10th most popular website a year after its launch. Google purchased YouTube in November 2006, making it one of its subsidiaries.
Today, 1.3 billion people use YouTube; 300 hours of video are uploaded every minute; and almost five billion videos are watched on YouTube every day.
“YouTube is one of this generation’s masterpieces of scale and simplicity,” said NATAS Technology & Engineering Committee Chairman Emeritus Charles Jablonski in the announcement. “It succeeded because of the extraordinary work it took to make the site easy to use, fast and capable of never-thought-of amounts of video. Television now has the ability to create, store and distribute material without the need of an intermediate party to gate-keep material to consumers.”
“The success of YouTube and the way it has revolutionized the way the average consumer can view, create and engage with an audience of millions is extraordinary,” added Adam Sharp, president & CEO of NATAS. “Hurley and Chen are a testament to the story of the American technology entrepreneur who imagine something and through hard work and perseverance makes that dream a reality, not only creating a new method of media distribution for a wide audience, but enabling the true democratization of television.”
Hurley and Chen will receive their awards during the 70th Annual Technology & Engineering Emmy Awards, which will take place at the Wynn Encore Resort & Spa in Las Vegas on Sunday, April 7, in cooperation with the 2019 NAB Show.