The online video site has since transformed the Web, but five years ago, it was on nobody's radar, except, maybe, its future owner, Google, which paid $1.65 billion in an all-stock deal for YouTube the year after the video-delivery site launched.
While YouTube's official birthday was on Valentine's Day 2005, it took company co-founder Jawed Karim more than two months to post a clip of his visit to the San Diego zoo's elephant enclosure. "Me at the Zoo" runs just 19 seconds but it has been watched by nearly 2 million viewers in the intervening five years.
The traffic on the site -- and submissions to it -- has exploded since its inception; YouTube says that Web visitors to the site watch hundreds of millions of videos every day. According to YouTube, 24 hours of video is uploaded every minute.