Everyone a Star

Steven Chen was born in Taiwan in 1978 and immigrated with his family in 1985. He studied Computer Science at the University of Illinois. He worked for PayPal after graduation, where he met Jawed Karim and Chad Hurley.

Jawed Karim was born in 1979 in East Germany. His father was from Bangladesh, while his mother was German. Experiencing racial discrimination in East and West Germany, Jawed and his family immigrated to America in 1992. He studied at the University of Illinois while working at PayPal. He also obtained a Master’s at Stanford.

Steven, Jawed, and Chad decided to form a video sharing website called YouTube. Jawed posted the first video. They started with the phrase “Broadcast Yourself.”

Within twelve years, 400 hours of content were added to YouTube every minute and one billion hours of content were watched each day. Two years after its founding, YouTube was named Time magazine’s Man of the Year.

Chad and Steven took an active role in YouTube early on while Jawed decided to go to graduate school. The three co-founders sold YouTube to Google for $1.65 billion one year after its launch.

Since their successful launch of YouTube, the three founders have gone on to work with other start-ups. Steven has returned to China.

Just imagine the impact that the three founders of YouTube have had on society both in the U.S. and worldwide. The site has been enabling for millions. It has also exacerbated some of society’s evils. Like many technologies, the potential for good or evil seems ever present. What is indisputable is that the creation of three young men (two who came to the U.S.) has had an immense impact.

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“We’re starting to see that anyone with an internet connection, a digital camera, and computer can become a star overnight.”  – Steven Chen

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