Google-owned YouTube has appointed a Web3-friendly Neal Mohan as its new CEO following the recent departure of Susan Wojcicki. YouTube’s long-serving CEO and one of its earliest employees, stepped down after her 25-year-long stint at the company. Mohan joined Google in 2008 and became a senior executive in the company’s display and video advertising business, then he was appointed chief product officer at YouTube in 2015. He was instrumental in building some of the platform’s biggest projects including YouTube TV, YouTube Music and Premium.
In the blog post, Wojcicki also praised Mohan for his understanding of YouTube as both a business and one of the most popular places for communities to gather. “He has a wonderful sense for our product, our business, our creator and user communities, and our employees.”
Mohan has always kept an open mind about the evolution of the Internet and innovations. In 2022, he shared in a blog post that YouTube was looking at ways to integrate Web3 technology, whether by “making YouTube more immersive” by leveraging the metaverse or tapping technology like NFTs. In his opinion, NFTs could be a “verifiable way for fans to own unique videos, photos, art, and even experiences from their favourite creators.” However, NFTs do not inherently transfer copyright over to new owners, so it is unclear how YouTube will achieve this. In terms of the metaverse, Mohan stated the technology’s use is “still in its early days” but said YouTube will “work to bring more interactions to games and make them feel more alive.”
YouTube’s parent company, Google, has also leaned more heavily into Web3 within the past year. In October 2022, Google and Coinbase teamed up to let some Google Cloud customers pay in crypto. Its competitor Meta is integrating NFTs onto its social media properties as well. We continue to observe.