Some time this afternoon, the YouTube "Video Views" count on my Sundroid channel passed 1,000,000. Roughly it means that my 130 videos on YouTube have been viewed 1 million times -- not a big deal in YouTube-land where many, many videos have gotten 1 million hits and more.
How accurate is YouTube's "Video Views" count? Fairly, well, sort of. First of all, YouTube counts every click on the video link, including my own. Being a video uploader, I have clicked on my own videos hundreds of times; however, YouTube does not count the "replays"; in other words, when people stay on the video page and watch it more than once by hitting the replay button, YouTube counter does not advance beyond the first click to that page. I am assuming that my own clicks are offset by the multiple plays by other viewers.
Like the supermarkets that have their clerks line up to cheer the one-millionth customer, my three cheers to whoever made the one-millionth click!
UPDATE (4/13/09): There seems to be some confusions regarding the way YouTube counts how many times our videos are played. From what I can gather on YouTube Community Help Forums, there are several possible theories (theories only, not facts):
1) YouTube has changed its algorithm of video view counts, and as a result, the video uploader's own clicks stop being counted after the view number advances to about 200 or 300?
2) YouTube has a programming bug which stops counting accurately after about 200 or 300 hits?
3) Or perhaps YouTube's software algorithm stops showing real-time hit counts, and will continue to show the cumulative result at a later time?
Anyway, there are a lot of complaints by YouTube users at the Community Help Forums, but the issue has so far not been definitively resolved. Typical complaint: "The view number is stuck after it hits either 205, or 305." This has also been my personal experience lately. Weird? I know.
MORE UPDATE 4/19/09: I've also noticed recently (in some incidents, not all) that only when a video was viewed in its entirety did the count advance. In other words, if you only click on a video to watch it for several seconds, it does not count as one view. Again, my observation is not scientific, so I could be wrong.